The Ruins of Pompeii
Pompeii was destroyed by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius on the evening of August 23rd to August 24th 79 CE. Pompeii, and the villas at Oplontis and Stabiae and the villa rustica at Boscoreale, were covered by ash and pumice while Herculaneum was covered under seventy feet of volcanic mud. Life in these cities suddenly stopped and they cities were hidden from view beneath the debris of Vesuvius until the 18th century when they were accidentally re-discovered during the reign of the Bourbon King of Naples, Charles III.
Under active excavation since that time, the sites have yielded important evidence about the daily life of the Romans including jewellery, coins, artwork in the form of incredible mosaics and frescoes. Today, life has returned to the “scavi” as thousands of visitors make their way through the sites.
A contemporary solution to a historic problem.
The new roof will protect the ruins from the rain and sunshine, maintaining the priceless treasures contained within. The proposal is for a metal roof which reflects the ruins back on themselves and offer a whole new perspective on the house.
What we need
Today, while the tablinum has a roof to protect the remaining frescoes in a rich ochre, there is no roof over the atrium. The frescoes on the walls of the atrium have been bleached or eroded from the exposure to the sunlight and the elements. The mosaic floor is covered with moss in the winter and plant material grows up between the tesserae destabilizing the tiles. The walls, made of soft tufa stone, never meant to be exposed to the elements, are eroding.
A roof over the atrium would protect the remaining frescoes and mosaics and would protect the walls. It will allow Caecilius’ house to withstand the damaging effects of the environment.
We need students, current and former, and teachers of the Cambridge Latin Course, who have learned about Caecilius, professors of Classics and everyone who loves the ancient world and wants to preserve this site for posterity to help us raise the funds to raise a roof for Caecilius.
Working to preserve the legacy of Lucius Caecilius Jucundus