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Herculaneum: Past and Future

Overview

"One could hardly ask for a clearer, more comprehensive, and better illustrated guide to Herculaneum." – Publishers Weekly

Winner of the Felicia A Holton Book Award 2013, from the Archaeological Institute of America

On 24 August A.D. 79, the volcano Vesuvius erupted, burying the cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum under ash and rock and leaving them remarkably well preserved for centuries. While Pompeii has been extensively written about and ...

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Overview

"One could hardly ask for a clearer, more comprehensive, and better illustrated guide to Herculaneum." – Publishers Weekly

Winner of the Felicia A Holton Book Award 2013, from the Archaeological Institute of America

On 24 August A.D. 79, the volcano Vesuvius erupted, burying the cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum under ash and rock and leaving them remarkably well preserved for centuries. While Pompeii has been extensively written about and popularized, the remains of its sister city, a smaller yet wealthier community close to the sea, are less widely known. This significant addition to the few available books focusing on Herculaneum is the first major study of the spectacular archaeological findings there since Joseph Jay Deiss' book, published in 1966 and last revised in 1993. It is based on the latest excavation work and incorporates much new material that has revolutionized our understanding of the site. Illustrated with 300 recent color photographs, it is the definitive overview for the general public of what we know and understand about Herculaneum, of what is still unknown and mysterious, and of the potential for future discoveries in both archaeological and political contexts.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Located between Naples and Pompeii, the town of Herculaneum was also destroyed by Mount Vesuvius' eruption in 79 C.E. This sumptuously illustrated book—including panoramic views stretching across four pages—provides an in-depth geological, architectural, and historical look at what is known about the town and its inhabitants, constituting the first book of its kind since Joseph Jay Deiss's 1966 study. The head of the Herculaneum Conservation Project, Wallace-Hadrill illustrates how its villas and apartments reflect status differences, how the numbers of freed slaves exceeded the freeborn so that Romans "fretted about the excessive number of ex-slaves making their way into citizenship, not unlike European anxieties about illegal immigration." Also included are a history of architectural efforts at Herculaneum, dating back to the early 18th century; a comparison of the city and Pompeii—Herculaneum is portrayed as "a place of greater wealth and sophistication"; and a discussion of conservation efforts. As important as the text are the color photographs of streetscapes, homes, and other buildings, and art (some of the latter seem strikingly modern, such as a silver portrait bust of the Emperor Galba). Perhaps the book's only flaw is the occasional unexplained reference, such as the intriguing "three good luck phalli" found in a bakery. Overall, however, one could hardly ask for a clearer, more comprehensive, and better illustrated guide to Herculaneum. (May)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780711231429
  • Publisher: Lincoln, Frances Limited
  • Publication date: 5/1/2011
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 694,927
  • Product dimensions: 10.20 (w) x 12.30 (h) x 1.40 (d)

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