We've often heard the phrase "The Gates of Hell," but did you know the Greeks and Romans actually located it? Not only that, but built an acropolis around it?
A recent discovery in Turkey uncovered the legendary site of the "Gates of Hell." When it was discovered by the ancient Greeks and Romans, certain philosophers tested the legend by tossing doves over the gas vent. The doves flew into the air, encountered the vapors emanating from the vent, and dropped dead. Why? Because the vent spews an extremely high concentration of Carbon Dioxide.
But imagine if you had no knowledge of science and saw wild animals expire when they got near a hole in the earth. How would you rationalize it? This is yet another example of how a kernel of truth spawns a legend. Ancient humans didn't understand all that they saw and experienced in their lives. Legends and stories often grow out of the need to explain the inexplicable.
The "Gates of Hell" is just another example of how a legend can be tracked back to an actual fact and then studied to determine what gave birth to the legend. In this case? Mystery solved.