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Visit the well-preserved ancient Roman town in the shadow of Mt. Vesuvius
Pompeii is one of the most significant and well-preserved remanants of the ancient Roman civilization and, almost 2000 years after its destruction, continues to tell us its stories through what we know about its art, customs, commerce and everyday life.
The city was rediscovered just as it was before it was covered by a thick layer of ash which rained down from the devastating eruption of Vesuvius in 79 A.D. The thick layer of volcanic material which submerged Pompeii, meant that the city has remained intact until the present day - not only as far as its buildings are concerned - but also the contents inside houses and shops, providing an absolutely fascinating picture of daily life.
The walls of the houses are still covered with electoral slogans or risque jokes aimed at particular citizens. The signs over shop doorways still indicate the activity carried out there or the name of the owner. Alongside the elegant villas belonging to the nobility and the luxurious residences of the middle class, stand the modest houses that several working-class families shared.
The lower-class houses were situated near vegetable gardens or small plots of land. On the edge of the city stood the brothels- squalid rooms intended as places of pleasure for sailors and travellers passing through. Down cramped alleys, workshops and storage rooms provide further evidence of the daily routines performed by worker, slaves and housewives. Upon rediscovery of the city, many well-preserved objects and entire stores were found: furniture, ornaments, gold and silverware, tools, bronze and terracotta lamps, food, drinking containers, grain mills and grindstones, workshops for manufacturing cloth, smithies and outlets selling groceries, fruit and vegetables. There is also a remarkable amount of ancient Roman paintings, without which, virtually nothing would be known.
The excavated city, where time stood still, provides us with outstanding historical evidence of the ancient Roman civilization and contributes greatly to the cultural heritage which Italy offers her visitors.