Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Our Week in Italy (Part Two)
I took this photo at Pompeii. See that mountain way in the background on the right hand side? That's Mount Vesuvius. On August 24, in the year 79 A.D., Vesuvius erupted and the city of Pompeii was destroyed.
On our second day in Italy, we took the train from Sorrento to Pompeii, which was about a 30 minute ride. The ruins of the ancient city are near the modern city of Pompeii, and the area is surrounded by mountains.
This is part of our group, as we found our way around the ruins of Pompeii. Two of our men wore red baseball caps, which helped us find them when they got lost in a crowd!
The ancient city of Pompeii was surrounded by walls. There were public areas, including large forums and a central market. It included temples, theaters, shops and cafes. There was an amphitheater and a palestra where sporting events were held. The residential areas contained the homes of wealthy citizens who owned grand villas with elaborate mosaics and beautiful gardens, as well as more modest homes of ordinary citizens.
These photos show the remains of the central Forum, which covered 58,000 square feet.
On one side of the Forum was the Temple of Jupiter.
Some of the details that remain today:
The photo below is a mosaic in the entryway of one of the homes of the wealthy. It says "Beware the Dog".
This mosaic is on the floor of the center court of another home:
The courtyard of a wealthy persons home (the statue is a reproduction).
Mosaics on part of another villa:
Elaborate gardens on the grounds of a grand villa... a very wealthy owner!
Detail on a public water trough:
As we were standing in Pompeii, I had this view of a church steeple in the neighboring town. For some reason, this intrigued me:
We didn't have the time or the energy to see the entire city. And more is being excavated today! It was a fascinating look into history.
More posts to come: Driving the Amalfi Coast, Positanto, and Capri