Ancient Cities


Book Details

Author  Charles River Editors
Publisher  CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Publication Date   August 23, 2013
ISBN  1492227013
Pages  42

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*Includes pictures of Pompeii, artifacts, and more.
*Chronicles the history of Pompeii since the first settlements there nearly 3,000 years ago.
*Includes quotes from Pliny the Younger about the eruption of Vesuvius.
*Includes a Bibliography for further reading.
They come in droves, busloads of tourists shepherded down through modern streets, shops and stalls, past souvenir stands and hordes of local guides offering insight and spectacle. From all across the world they come to the Italian region of Campania, to walk the cobbles of ancient streets, peer at frescoes, marvel at sculptures, and visit the remnants of historic villas, bath-houses and even brothels. In 2003, it was estimated these international visitors contributed some $35 million dollars to the Italian economy. A feature of the Grand Tour, an educational rite of passage for wealthy travelers from the mid-1600s to the mid-1800s, Pompeii has long been a popular destination for tourists; in 2008, an estimated 2.5 million tourists visited it.
The type of tourists also changed over time. In 79 A.D., the year Vesuvius erupted, Pompeii was actually the equivalent of a resort town for wealthy Romans. Over 1500 years later, it was only the wealthy elite who could afford to travel, trekking through Italy to examine culture, art and the roots of Western civilization. They sought exposure to the relics of classical antiquity while deepening language skills, broadening aristocratic connections, commissioning paintings and generally mingling with the higher social classes of the Continent. In more contemporary times, increases in the technology of transportation allowed the movement of people from multiple social classes, scales of wealth and cultural backgrounds. The style of traveler has altered, but the attractions of Pompeii have not.
Naturally, the main attraction of Pompeii is its time capsule nature, and the way in which it provides a snapshot of life in the past. The study of archaeology can examine varied scales of space and time, examining the long term changes of human material across centuries and continents, or the short term actions of a single event in one small room. Scale varies according to the research questions and the available data, but it goes without saying that it is highly unusual to encounter the material culture of an entire city effectively preserved within a single moment.
Ancient Cities: The History of Pompeii comprehensively covers the history of the famous Roman city that was born, destroyed, and reborn again, looking at what life was like in the city before and during the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 A.D. Along with pictures and a bibliography, you will learn about Pompeii like you never have before, in no time at all.

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