Pompeii, Campania, Italy 1/2014

April 8, 2014

Heading south from Rome we were basically looking for a nice place to spend Gary’s birthday. The ancient city of Pompeii had always been on our list of areas to visit. Monika had been there with her parents many years ago and had fond memories.

Pompeii rises on a plateau of Vesuvius’ lava overlooking the Sarno River Valley at whose mouth was once a busy port. Its origins date back to the 1st half of the 16th century BC. In 62 A.D. a violent earthquake virtually leveled the city. Seventeen years later, still in the process of rebuilding the earthquake damage, Vesuvius erupted on 24 August 79 A.D. and buried Pompeii under ash and rock. It was not rediscovered until the 16th century.

The archaeological area of Pompeii extends for approximately 163 acres of which approximately 111 have been excavated. It is quite amazing what they have uncovered. As we walked the streets in the early morning without the crowds of tourists, it was like strolling through a deserted ghost town. We could see were elegant homes once stood. We ducked under archways and poked around inside public baths. On many walls we marveled at the beautiful frescoes. Intricately designed brick walls and mosaic floors showed the artistic abilities of the original citizens. There were bakeries, fast-food restaurants, fountains and even a couple of houses of ill repute. The open-air great theater could seat 5000 spectators.

In the abandoned granary now used as a warehouse for artifacts, we grimaced at the plaster molds of victims who obviously died horrible and painful deaths.

For a little impression of what Pompeii is all about, scroll through the photos below. They may tell part of the story but much will never be known.

One Response to “Pompeii, Campania, Italy 1/2014”

  1. Heading south from Rome we were basically looking for a nice place to spend Gary’s birthday. The ancient city of… http://t.co/g9igBmYCzq

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