Dec
04
2007

Unearthing a throne: Archaeologists make rare find near Pompeii

Roman throne: This isn't the actual find, but archaeologists near Pompeii have unearthed what is believed to be the oldest known throne from the Roman empire. The new find is throne made of wood and depicts scenes from Greek mythology.
Roman throne: This isn't the actual find, but archaeologists near Pompeii have unearthed what is believed to be the oldest known throne from the Roman empire. The new find is throne made of wood and depicts scenes from Greek mythology.Courtesy mharrsch
Once or twice a week, I get to work in the Pompeii exhibit currently here at the Science Museum of Minnesota. And during most shifts, at least once I’m asked if they’re still finding items buried in the rubble from the volcanic explosion that hit the coastal Italian city in the year 79 A.D.

The short answer is “yes.”

The longer answer is that archaeologists this fall uncovered what they believe to be the first Roman throne. The throne was found at an excavation of Herculaneum, a small city that was buried along with Pompeii when Mount Vesuvius erupted.

Items that were found were only two legs and portion of the back of the throne, but it’s a one-of-a-kind find. The only other depictions of Roman thrones from that era that researchers have previously found have been in works of art from that period.

The throne was found 82 feet below the surface of Herculaneum in a house that is thought to have belonged to Julius Caesar’s father-in-law. The throne is adorned with images from Greek mythology along with pine cones and phalluses.

And this is really only the start of the learning process. The throne remains will now go through a restoration process while archaeologists continue digging at the site to find out if there are any other treasures buried there.

What to learn more about what's currently happening in the Pompeii region? Here's a link to the official website of the archeology organization that's conducting the excavations.

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

The Pompeii exhibit is very cool!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

posted on Wed, 01/30/2008 - 9:41am

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