Herculaneum : Italy's Buried Treasure

By (author) Joseph Jay Deiss


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A vivid portrayal of life in Pompeii's sister city, this book includes a detailed description of the ancient Villa dei Papiri, on which the present Getty Museum in Malibu is modeled.

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  • Paperback | 222 pages
  • 154 x 230 x 14mm | 498.95g
  • 20 Feb 1993
  • Getty Trust Publications
  • J. Paul Getty Museum
  • Santa Monica CA
  • English
  • New edition
  • New edition
  • 118 b&w illustrations
  • 0892361646
  • 9780892361649
  • 379,908

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Praise for the first edition "A fascinating book. The daily life of the Romans, rich and poor, has been wonderfully recreated."--Library Journal"Exciting reading...A spirited guide."--The New York Times

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Review text

In 79 A.D. Vesuvius blew its top. Pompeii was buried in ashes and nearby Herculaneum was submerged in mud which became rock-hard, thus preserving every detail of its life, from art and architecture to charred loaves of bread. The Vice-Director of the American Academy in Rome describes Herculaneum's history, catastrophe, and various early attempts to dig it out (chiefly through tunnelling), and then goes on to list the various finds. The subject is somewhat self-limiting: pages of descriptions, though indeed splendid, and accompanied by maps and photographs, tend to become as frustrating as reading a guidebook without being on the spot. The author's attempts to enliven the material with small guessed-at stories, sometimes treated as fact, are ill-advised. The subject, however, is awe-inspiring, as was the ancient Romans' notion of a modest vacation home, of which so many were examples remain to be here described. (Kirkus Reviews)

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