Europe

Pompeii

Urgent Postcard from Pompeii

Rick Jones, of Bradford and the Anglo-American Project in Pompeii, shares his urgent views on the conservation and future of the town

Pompeii: The Last Day

What is the best book to read for a basic introduction to Pompeii? Paul Wilkinson has just produced Pompeii: the last day (BBC Books, £16.99), written to accompany the recent TV reconstruction of the destruction of the city. The link with the TV programme is loose, and this is really just another summary of the […]

Lost World of Pompeii

The crisis in Vesuvian archaeology runs deep. Pompeii is fast degrading, with walls crumbling, frescoes erased by the sun, plaster dropping off walls, and mosaics being churned up by weeds. Many of the finds from early excavations have not been catalogued, and there are great gaps in the published record. The Lost World of Pompeii […]

Pompeii: a novel

Pompeii has featured in fiction many times. The first-century Roman novelist Petronius set his Satyricon in the Bay of Naples, and one can imagine the grand dinner hosted by the vulgar nouveau riche freedman Trimalchio – the most famous scene in the book – taking place in a Pompeian peristyle. In 1834 Edward Bulwer-Lytton published […]

Houses & Society in Pompeii & Herculaneum

Interpreting Pompeii Many of the older studies of Pompeii seem rather dry today. Architecture, mosaics and frescoes were classified into types. Houses were distinguished according to whether limestone, volcanic tuff or concrete was used to build them. Architecture was ‘Samnite’, ‘Hellenistic’ or ‘Roman colonial’. Frescoes were grouped into four main styles. These various types were […]

Pompeii: Public & Private Life

Paul Zanker’s Pompeii: public and private life (Harvard, £15.95) is another book in the same vein. The German author is an archaeology professor who has served as the Director of the German Archaeological Institute in Rome. Like Wallace-Hadrill, his aim is to ‘read’ material culture for encoded statements about past society. His big idea is […]

Roman Artillery

The archaeology of a Roman technological revolution: the cheiroballistra

NeilFaulkner

Being Vercingetorix

Neil Faulkner describes a forthcoming TV series on Caesar’s campaigns in Gaul

Butrint, Albania

The Graeco-Roman site of Butrint, is hitherto little known, because it lies in Albania, and has thus been little visited. But since Albania has been free, Butrint has been a triumph

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