Travel

Pompeii (World Heritage)

According to mathgeneral, the cities on the Gulf of Naples, which were submerged under dramatic circumstances by the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 AD, have been excavated since the 18th century. They are fascinating examples of Roman town planning and vividly convey everyday life in antiquity. Outstanding facilities in Pompeii include the House of Menander and the House of the Faun.

Pompeii: facts

Official title: Archaeological sites of Pompeii, Herculaneum and Torre Annunziata
Cultural monument: Pompeii et al. with the Forum triangulare, the »House of Menander«, the 80 m long and 35 m wide »House of the Faun«, the »House of Julia Felix«, Herculaneum and others. with over 150 skeleton finds (1980), the “house with the wooden trap door” and the “house with the mosaic-adorned atrium” as well as the very well-preserved frescoes in the Villa Oplontis by Torre Annunziata
Continent: Europe
Country: Italy, Campania
Location: Pompeii and Herculaneum, southeast of Naples
Appointment: 1997
Meaning: remarkable examples of two “sunken” cities of the early Roman Empire that provide a complete picture of life in a provincial city of the 1st century AD

Pompeii: history

around 600 BC Chr. Foundation of Pompeii
80 BC Chr. under Lucius Cornelius Sulla Pompeii as a Roman colony and probably the construction of the 136 x 104 m amphitheater
63 Destruction of Pompeii by earthquake
8/24/79 Pompeii and Herculaneum are buried during the eruption of Vesuvius
1738 first excavations at the instigation of Charles III. of bourbon
1861 Construction of the antiquarian store for the storage of the excavation finds
1869 Start of systematic excavations
1943 erroneous attack by Allied warplanes on Pompeii
1980 Damage to the exposed buildings from an earthquake
1998 Opening of a footpath along the city wall between Porta Nola and Porta Nocera
11/6/2010 After heavy rainfall, the Schola Armaturarum, the gladiator school, collapses and is completely destroyed
2012 The European Union and the Italian state are making EUR 105 million available for urgent restoration work in Pompeii
2013 UNESCO calls on Italy to start restoration work by the end of 2013 at the latest, otherwise Pompeii will be removed from the list of World Heritage Sites

Living on after the downfall

The boot of Italy with an ancient urban culture, buried under lava and ash after a volcanic eruption, a small town in the metropolitan area of ​​Naples with many unemployed despite the textile and food industry, a bishopric and a pilgrimage church – all of this is Pompeii, which was much better 2000 years ago went. As a Roman provincial city at the intersection of important trade routes, Pompeii experienced a real heyday thanks to wine cultivation and oil production. Even in the phase of reconstruction after an earthquake that was not at all unusual here, the place experienced another catastrophe more than a decade later, its complete demise. Only this ensured him – paradoxically – an unusual survival as a celebrity, and not only in the memory of the world.

Freed from ash and earth again, parts of the city can be experienced very concretely: Visitors stroll through the streets, enter shops and stylish residential buildings and admire the taste for the selection of decorations or the once prevailing relaxed approach to all sorts of love games in frescoes are depicted at the entrances of a former brothel.

What has been preserved of the magnificent city makes an immediate journey through time easy and fascinating. What has been destroyed by it, perhaps only makes the rapid leap in time into antiquity tangible for the amazed mind of the visitor. It is extremely impressive to see what has been preserved in the sinking. And this under a blanket that was fatal for many people, but stopped the natural decay of their physical environment. When Pompeii was buried under ash, lava and pumice stone, Pliny the Younger was an eyewitness. He saw how “many raised their hands to the gods, but almost all of them were convinced that the gods no longer existed.” The disaster is not only comprehensible through the medium of the detailed chronicle. Under a covering up to seven meters thick, which has been used since the mid-18th In addition to architecture and art, horror scenes of human death were also preserved – plastic snapshots that were only revealed during the excavations, when cavities in the lava, which had solidified over time, were filled with plaster. This gave exact imprints of people who were overtaken by their fate, suffocated by hot sulfur fumes or covered in postures of deadly surprise and desperate defense against ashes.

Via dell’Abbondanza is the longest street in the Roman provincial city and was once the liveliest. In this “Street of Abundance” with its shops and house walls with election advertisements, cartwheels have left deep furrows on the basalt stone road. There are traces of the diverse and contrasting life in Pompeii up to the fall of the city, the refined, luxurious way of life, pomp and lively trade on the one hand and the everyday life of the working people on the other. Only two thirds of the city – the size of around 90 soccer fields – have been exposed, and only a fifth is accessible to the approximately 2.5 million visitors a year. These are mainly found at the most famous sights. They envy the quality of living in the representative houses such as the “House of the Faun” named after a graceful statue. When countless visitors crowd into the “House of the Vettier”, the archaeologists fear for the wall paintings, which were not intended for eternity but only for a generation of residents. If new areas can be exposed and others released after restoration, this is advantageous in several ways: science is served, the curiosity of visitors too. And when these are more spread out over the city, it takes the burden off the popular sights. Because the further decline of Pompeii should be stopped. which were not intended for eternity, but only for a generation of house residents. If new areas can be exposed and others released after restoration, this is advantageous in several ways: science is served, the curiosity of visitors too. And when these are more spread out over the city, it takes the burden off the popular sights. Because the further decline of Pompeii should be stopped. which were not intended for eternity, but only for a generation of house residents. If new areas can be exposed and others released after restoration, this is advantageous in several ways: science is served, the curiosity of visitors too. And when these are more spread out over the city, it takes the burden off the popular sights. Because the further decline of Pompeii should be stopped.

Along with Pompeii and Stabiae, the neighboring city of Herculaneum was also destroyed when Vesuvius erupted. The small town of around 20 hectares was located on the Gulf of Naples. At the time of its demise, the small port town had around 4,000 residents (Pompeii: 20,000). They lived mainly from fishing, agriculture and handicrafts. Nevertheless, the uncovered houses reveal a partly high standard of living for their owners. One of the most important villas in the city is the Villa dei Papiri, known for its library.

Pompeii (World Heritage)