Thursday, June 2, 2016

Getting Ready for Pompeii

Like a previous trip I have been extremely remiss in not staying current on these posts.  However I did use that wonder App called Track My Tour (please tell Chris that I sent you if you check it out) which did a much better job.  Here is the link to this part of the trip -- Click here.


Probably the highlight of our sojourn in Naples was visiting the Archaeological Museum.  We hopped off the bus here for several hours which were just wonderful.

First of all, this entire region is really old.  There is loads of old stuff to house here.  But the really important raison d'etre of the museum is that anything of quality that could be found in the ruins of Pompeii and Herculaneum were moved here.

Not recently of course.  The Farnese family of the 16th century were popes and had a taste for antiquity so moved anything and everything that he could (statues, sculptures, mosaics, etc.) to his palaces in Rome.  Once Bonaparte invaded Italy in the last years of the 18th century, Italy's map was redrawn but one thing that remained was the Kingdon of the Two Sicilies which passed under the control of Murat, his great cavalry commander.  Murat took back all these wonders and put them into his palace which ultimately morphed into this fantastic museum.

Included too is a 'naughty' room where all those artifacts found in Pompeiian brothels are displayed.  In past days, only the bigwigs could view these delights.  Later on, just men.  It is now open to all over the age of 18.  Interesting sculptures, toys, trinkets, paintings and things couldn't really be identified.  As this is a smut free zone, I will leave the details to your imagination.

The young Augustus when he was still called Octavian
Uncle Julius with a very generously sculptured profile
One of the most famous mosaics from Pompeii

Imagine this was on the floor first of all.  This is what you walk on when entering a house in the Roman era.  It is a mosaic from a house in Pompeii that we later visited taken from an old Greek painting of one of Alexander's great battles against the Persians.  A copy of the painting is to the left.  Alexander's head is all that can be seen on the left.
This is a painting taken from the wall of a house in Pompeii.  The Romans painted directly onto the plaster which is why so few paintings remain.  This is red hued due to the heat of the big day in 79 AD.
The famous bull sculpture (room size from one single piece of marble apparently) reminds us why adultery is a bad thing.  If caught you get chained to a wild bull by your children like this God from antiquity.
Hercules after his 11th labour needed a rest so leaned on his big stick.  I had a cold drink and pizza.

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