Pompeii Paint Problem

New scientific research is attempting to discern why Pompeii’s paintings are turning black after excavation


Review: The Bankers of Puteoli

The Bankers of Puteoli: Finance, Trade and Industry in the Roman World David Jones Tempus, £19.99  In 1955, a hoard of over a hundred wax writing tablets was discovered when a motorway was being constructed 500 yards south of the Stabian Gate at Pompeii, in an area known as the Agri Murecini. Publication of the […]

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Ara Pacis, Italy

Richard Hodges visits architect Richard Meier’s new building that encloses the Ara Pacis, the monument to peace erected by Emperor Augustus


The Medici Conspiracy

This is a gripping read of conspiracies between dealers and major museums that have been going on for decades, but now – only now – are being uncovered. The book reads like a thriller with Robert Hecht being the principal villain of the piece, but Sotheby’s, the Getty, the Boston Museum of Fine Arts and […]


The Medici Conspiracy

Peter Watson and Cecili Todeschini Public Affairs Books £15.99 This is very much a Cowboys and Indians sort of book chronicling the trial of Giacomo Medici in Italy in 2003 with lots of provocative headlines such as ‘Collectors are the real looters’. Peter Watson is a former writer for the Sunday Times and the book […]

Riccardo Francovich

Richard Hodges interviews Professor Francovich, leading exponent of Medieval Archaeology in Italy


Terracina, Italy

Richard Hodges sends his missive from a constellation of sites lying south of Rome, notably Terracina and Sperlonga

Pompeii the Living City

At Pompeii, an election was in full swing when it was rudely interrupted by Vesuvius. Election slogans are everywhere, over 3,000 of them, which is a bit of a surprise considering that Rome by this time was supposed to be an Empire which had lost its ‘freedom’. This however, is surely one of the secrets […]

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