Pompeii in Pictures

Pompeii and Vesuvius at dusk | Photo by Darryl Brooks
Pompeii and Vesuvius at dusk | Photo by Darryl Brooks

Pompeii in Pictures

by Amanda Palumbo & Genevieve Northup
Stripes Europe

Many of us know the story of Pompeii. In August A.D. 79, thousands of residents were going about their daily routines when a torrent of volcanic ash from Mount Vesuvius buried the city of Pompeii. Shrouded in hardened ash 30 feet deep, the people, animals and buildings were suspended in time. Excavation of the missing city began in 1748, providing a detailed portrayal of life in the Roman Empire.   

Pictures from the past and present paint a much better picture than many words can.

(Note: Some of these photos show the city's late residents in their final moments. What you're seeing is a reproduction with plaster.) 

Photo by Larisa Shpineva

A panoramic view of the Pompeii Ruins.


Photo by Leonid Andronov

House of Julia Felix, a large Roman property that was once converted into apartments after a major earthquake in 62 AD, 17 years before the Vesuvius eruption.


Photo by Tomasz Guzowski

A cobblestone street running through the ruins of Pompeii that once held chariots and crowds of locals.


Photo by Anna Yakimova

The courtyard of the Stabian Baths, where some of the richest members of Pompeii's society relaxed and exercised in luxury. 


Photo by Graham Moore 

Inside the Lupanare Grande, Pompeii's largest brothel. It is one of the most well-preserved sites in Pompeii.


Photo by dogstock

Pompeii's victims were preserved 30 feet below the surface. In 1850, Italian archeologist Giuseppe Fiorelli started to excavate the site. He realized there were pockets of soft ash, which were left from the dead in their final state. Fiorelli and his team filled those pockets with plaster to recreate their final moments. Modern archeologists have been using CT scans to gain a more accurate picture of how they died.


Photo by lightfieldstudios

Mount Vesuvius, the still-active volcano responsible for the lost city of Pompeii. It is the only active volcano in mainland Europe and last erupted in 1944.

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