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Beard, Mary - Pompeii - The Life Of A Roman Town - ( Item 125746 )

Published in London by Folio Society. 2013. First Thus. Fine Hardback. No inscriptions or bookplates. Very Good+ slipcase. Some marks to panels of slipcase. Slight bump to the edge of one panel. Introduced by Ferdinand Mount. In this award-winning history, Mary Beard guides us through the daily life of Pompeii – an existence that is far more complex than we might have realised. Lively, exciting and accessible, this book brings us as close as possible to the real Pompeii. Endpapers feature the redrawn maps of Pompeii. Three-quarter-bound in cloth. Modigliani paper side printed with Flora, or Primavera, from the Villa Adriana in Stabiae. Set in Plantin. 408 pages with frontispiece. 32 pages of colour plates. Book size: 10” x 6¾”. Digging beneath the myths and assumptions, Beard reveals a place of contradictions. Contrary to popular assumption, the inhabitants were warned about the volcano; the town was semi-evacuated when it was engulfed. Only 17 years earlier Pompeii had been rocked by a catastrophic earthquake, from which it was still recovering. A wealthy, multi-cultural town, Pompeii had made a fortune in fish sauce, perhaps the least appetising of condiments. It was a place devoted to the pleasures of life, where statues of gods and phalluses were equally popular. We find that the poorest inhabitants had no kitchens or sanitation, yet the sophisticated street design featured traffic-calming measures, advertising billboards and even a congestion zone. By providing a fresh interpretation of the graffiti on the walls, Beard even lets the Pompeiians speak: 'Ladicula’s a thief ', 'Atimetus got me pregnant'. Lively, exciting and accessible, this book brings us as close as possible to the real Pompeii. Mary Beard is Professor of Classics at the University of Cambridge and a broadcaster and writer; Pompeii is one of her best-known books. This edition contains 32 pages of colour photographs, from images of Pompeii’s streets with their raised stepping stones, possibly to protect pedestrians from piles of refuse, to haunting plaster casts of the volcano’s victims. Each photograph has been captioned by the author, and two redrawn maps as endpapers show the site of Pompeii and its surroundings. In a newly commissioned preface, author Ferdinand Mount praises this account of a 'city of gags and graffiti'. Mary Beard manages to show us at the same time that almost none of the things we have always assumed about the destruction of the city in 79 AD is quite true, and yet that in a larger sense most of them are true, some of them truer than we knew.

Price £ 28.40                 Other items you may like                 Others by the same author

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