Welcome to the Core Study for the HSC. This study is on the Cities of Vesuvius: Pompeii and Herculaneum.
This blog has been put together to assist you with your revision of key content for this topic and is to be used in conjunction with your class notes.
The focus of our core study will be to investigate the range and nature of archaeological and written sources available for the study of the cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum through an exploration of issues relating to reconstruction, ownership and custodianship of the past.
Our syllabus requires us to work through the following dot points.
stages of occupation
brief historical overview up to and including the eruption of AD 79
early discoveries and brief history of the excavations
representations of Pompeii and Herculaneum over time
1. Geographical context
the physical environment: the geographical setting, natural features and resources of Pompeii and Herculaneum
plans and streetscapes of Pompeii and Herculaneum
2. The nature of sources and evidence
the range of available sources, both written and archaeological, including ancient
writers, official inscriptions, graffiti, wall paintings, statues, mosaics, human and animal remains
the limitations, reliability and evaluation of sources
the evidence provided by the sources from Pompeii and Herculaneum for:
– the eruption
– the economy: trade, commerce, industries, occupations
– social structure; men, women, freedmen, slaves
– local political life
– everyday life: leisure activities, food and dining, clothing, health, baths, water supply and sanitation
– public buildings – basilicas, temples, fora, theatres, palaestra, amphitheatres
– private buildings – villas, houses, shops
– influence of Greek and Egyptian cultures: art, architecture, religion
– religion: temples, household gods, foreign cults, tombs.
3. Investigating, reconstructing and preserving the past
changing methods and contributions of nineteenth and twentieth century
archaeologists to our understanding of Pompeii and Herculaneum
changing interpretations: impact of new research and technologies
issues of conservation and reconstruction: Italian and international contributions and responsibilities; impact of tourism
ethical issues: study and display of human remains