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  • Russell Roy

A Day in Pompeii


When I was kid, National Geographic magazine had an article on Pompeii. At that time, the archeological excavations were discovering all kinds of interesting things. One thing I specifically remember is that they found strange voids in the ashes. Somebody decided that they should fill these voids with plaster. When the ash was removed, the plaster cast reveled a human body. It was crazy. Some of those plaster casts were still on display when we visited the site. One of these casts is visible on the left side of the first photo below. It is disturbing to imagine that person may have been praying when his body was consumed by hot volcanic ash.


Overall walking around Pompeii you get a sense of what it would have been like in the city when it was alive and well. There was a cistern at the highest point in the town which provided running water to all of the homes below. The network of pipes which distributed the water was exposed in various places around town. Shops and homes line the streets.


There is a forum where government activities took place. A bakery, complete with grinding stones and even a small coliseum with a gladiator school right beside it.





Many buildings are complete to the extent that their mosaic tiles are preserved as are painted plaster walls. Artifacts collected from the site can be viewed at the museum in Naples.

While at the museum, don't forget to ask to visit the "adult" room. It contains racy mosaics that were likely removed from a former brothel and some very explicit statues and phalli.



#Ruins #Ancient #Architecture