This part of our pages is about Pompei, which is considered to be one of the most known ancient settlements in the whole world due to the tragedy it has experienced. During our visit, we were informed truly by our local guide that what we know about Pompei was away from the reality but just a fantasy or fiction. We will give these details when it is the time to, but in the first place it is worth to mention about the city of Naples, which is one of the important cities of the Middle Ages and Renaissance period, and the method of travel.
We planned our trip based in Rome and made a round-trip tour with the tour bus in agreement with a tour company. So I'm not going to give an idea of going directly to Naples. The hotels in Rome are usually advertising brochures of tour companies and mostly there are representatives in the lobies. You can ask for information from them and set an appropriate tour. The price is around 120 euros fıor one person including lunch. If you want, you can also add Capri Island and Sorento beaches to your itinerary. In this case, you will need to spread your trip for a few days.
POMPEI / NAPOLI
It is the city of Napples where the volcano of Vesuvius, which determines the fate of the city of Pompei. feudal principalities and the city-states in Italy were very strong & effective. The city of Napples is located in the Campania region of southern Italy. According to our guide, it was a Greek city when first founded. İt was somewhat influenced by the culture of Spain, and a bit distant from the culture of Northern Italy. napples was one of the most effective principalities in İtalian peninsula. After the unification of the principalities of Italy it started to loose its importance. Therefore, the original people of Naples do not like Rome or Italian unity. it was the capital city of the autonomous state of Napples between 1285 - 1816, so the local people doesnt like the idea being pushed into a second category. Since we did not spend much time in Naples during the tour, we are passing the details and history of Naples. These details can be accessed from relevant sites. But just to give a brief idea, it can be said that it is not an attractive city. The city can be said to be too messy and filthy. it is Italy's third largest city in terms of population. According to the information we received, the crime rates were quite high. So watch out for your wallets and bags. The most important feature is that the city's western facade has a magnificent view of Mount Vesuvius.
Let's come to the ancient city of Pompei. Actually, I would say the trip was a disappointment to us. As you might expect, we went with great curiosity and excitement because of what we have learned before about Pompei's inflated history and well-made advertising. There were expectations like seeing people in various positions petrified under the lava like they are in circulating pictures on the Internet, to see a city and buildings lurking under the lava etc. Instead we found a very clean, well preserved streets and a protected area full of restored buildings. There was no trace of lava. İnstead, we learned that, in fact, 15 years before the volcano eruption, there was a great earthquake in the city and about 80% of the people of Pompeii abandoned the city slowly. those who were in the city at the time of the eruption of vacano, were the people who couldn't left becouse of the lack of the financial power and the slaves who were protecting the empty residences of rich people. Some of these slaves were found bound by chains under the lava.
Again, as it is mentioned by corrupted history, the people of Pompei and the city itself were not a city of immorality in the swamp of prostitution. Therefore, the angry Roman gods were not punished them for this reason. As you know, Pompei is described as the people of a city of immorality like the People of the Lut, and as supportive evidence, it is shown that the ''Penis Shape'' was engraved on the stones in many parts of the city as reliefs. It is also said that these reliefs indicate general houses or bordellos. Yes, as said, many places have these reliefs, but they do not point general sex houses. As in the statues of the god of fertility in Anatolia, this sign actually symbolizes luck and fertility. Besides, there is a general house street in the city and even recently restored, but as exaggerated, not every house in Pompeii is also was a general home.
Engraved penis Sign and restored general house (Above), The bed in general house (Below)
Erotic art in Pompeii and Herculaneum has been both exhibited as art and censored as pornography. The Roman cities around the bay of Naples were destroyed by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD, thereby preserving their buildings and artifacts until extensive archaeological excavations began in the 18th century. These digs revealed the cities to be rich in erotic artifacts such as statues, frescoes, and household items decorated with sexual themes. The ubiquity of such imagery and items indicates that the treatment of sexuality in ancient Rome was more relaxed than current Western culture. (However, much of what might strike modern viewers as erotic imagery (e.g. oversized phalluses) could arguably be fertility imagery.) This clash of cultures led to a large number of erotic artifacts from Pompeii being locked away from the public for nearly 200 years.
In 1819, when King Francis I of Naples visited the Pompeii exhibition at the Naples National Archaeological Museum with his wife and daughter, he was embarrassed by the erotic artwork and ordered it to be locked away in a "secret cabinet", accessible only to "people of mature age and respected morals". Re-opened, closed, re-opened again and then closed again for nearly 100 years, the Secret Museum, Naples was briefly made accessible at the end of the 1960s, and was finally re-opened for viewing in 2000. Minors are still only allowed entry to the once-secret cabinet in the presence of a guardian, or with written permission.
In some preserved and restored buildings, it is possible to see beautiful examples of mosaic work on walls and places.
One of the things that we know wrong is that the corpses which were turned into stone were found in the city. Although the lava layer is spread over it, it is not possible to protect and petrify the body as it is. What has happened is that after the lava has cooled down, the body slowly disappear and a space with the shape of a body remains. The meltened bodies leave spaces in the form of human body in hardened lava. Afterwards, the spaces are filled with some kind of liquid thrugh the holes made on the lava. When the matter solidifies, the lava layer is broken and the remaining hardened liquid is removed as human body. Even if the organic parts of the body disappear, the skeleton and teeth remain in the mold. That's the process.
We continue to walk in the streets of Pompei. Just to give some interesting information; Pompeii's narrow, marble-covered main streets have traces of horse-drawn carriages from centuries ago. The cars left deep traces on the marble ground by traficking over & over in the same trail. There are also the holes in the marble pavements in front of almost every house. As told, they were being used to rope animals. On the walls of some houses, there are still slogans about political elections. Italians tried to cover them with glass to protect. There are many shops on the main street. Bar stalls, holes in the looms filled with amphoras, even the base lines of the sliding doors of the shops still remain. You can see the lead pipes they use to cary the water inside the houses. Those times they were unaware the harmness of lead. Because of this, there had been many deaths due to lead poisoning.
You can also get information about the city's sewage system during the tour. The houses were pouring dirty water into the streets and sent downhill using gravity. Because of the presence of ammonia in it, the urine at that time was being used for cleaning purposes.
Because the urine flows on the roads, people do not want to step on the road while accrossing. So, There are large stones on the roads connecting the two sides of the pavements. they were looking like pedestrians passage signs which we use now. By stepping on these stones, they move freelyon the pavements only. Besides, in order not to create obstacles for the carts they left the gaps in which the carts could pass.
There are some restored buildings on the road on the side streets. If you go with a guide, you stay connected to the people and you may miss a lot of places according to the guide's enjoyment or program. for this reason, independent travel is a more plausible solution.
There are many well preserved or restored buildings in Pompeii. In general, the ''Bath cultur'' of the Roman people is quite advanced. At that time, the hot water installations they built were quite interesting and admirable.
As we mentioned before, the ancient city of Pompei is not so worth to be such famous in the world, and its reputation as a legend of the '' city of immorality '' and '' the Lut Tribe of Europe, '' is baloney. Since the area did not meet the expectations, it was necessary that the Italians placed statues in the area near the main square and exit, to increase the visual enjoyment.
The restaurants, cafes and souvenir shops outside the site are not very welcoming places. Business owners and staff are generally not polite against the tourists. There are a number of the pearlescent made & seashell carved accessories and jewelry selling shops. This and more can be taken to a luxury store that sells different products. Here an artist demonstrates his live performance on carving. Guided tours are often attempted to ensure that groups visit these shops. You can guess that every guide that takes the group into the shop, gets a percentage of sales commissionthroughout the sellings to the tour members.
Pompei / Homepage