Facts About Pompeii in Italy

Facts About Pompeii in Italy
Located southeast of the modern Italian city of Naples, the ancient Roman town of Pompeii lay buried until the mid-18th century. Today it is the longest continually excavated archaeological site in the world.

History

A post-neolithic settlement at the base of Mount Vesuvius, Pompeii came under the influence of the Greeks in the 8th century B.C., and the Romans in 89 B.C. By 79 A.D., Pompeii was a thriving center of culture and commerce with more than 10,000 inhabitants.

Destruction

On Aug. 24 in 79 A.D., Mount Vesuvius erupted unleashing a hail of hot ash and stone that destroyed much of Pompeii. The next morning, flows of toxic gas and volcanic particles asphyxiated the residents who remained as falling ash and debris blanketed the city.

Significance

Buried under 20 feet of stone and ash, Pompeii was preserved and protected from degradation and plunder for 17 centuries. With more than 108 acres excavated, Pompeii is the only site of its kind offering a detailed picture of life in an ancient Roman town.

Sites

See plaster casts of victims of the 79 A.D. eruption at the the Garden of the Fugitives, and painted murals and the famous mosaic floor depicting Alexander the Great in the House of the Faun. Visit the elegant villas and gardens of wealthy merchants as well as public spaces such as the basilica, the forum and multiple baths and temples.

Visiting

From Naples, visitors can reach Pompeii by car, bus or train. Tickets to tour Pompeii are valid for one day and cost roughly $16 (U.S.). The site is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, November to March, with extended hours April to October.

Article Written By Michelle Ellsworth

Michelle Ellsworth has been a professional writer and researcher for 10 years. In addition to writing for Demand Studios, she writes for television documentary programs on forensic science, crime, extremism, and lifestyles. Ellsworth holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Printmaking and a minor in philosophy from Old Dominion University.

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