How to use Herculaneum in a sentence
The rolls found in the ruins of Herculaneum contain generally the less interesting works of writers of the, Epicurean school.
The more brittle condition of the Latin papyri found at Herculaneum has been instanced as the evil result of this re-making of the material.
In the famous picture of Tomomachus of Byzantium Medea is deliberating whether or not she shall kill her children; there are copies of this painting in the mural decorations of Herculaneum and Pompeii.
In the period before the Roman supremacy it appears to have been the chief town in the valley of the Sarnus, Herculaneum, Pompeii, Stabiae and Surrentum all being dependent upon it.
The talent was of 120 minae of 5400, or 3000 shekels, shown by the talent from Herculaneum, TA, 660,000 and by the weight inscribed PONDO CXXV.Advertisement
Vesuvius (q.v.), the volcanic forces of which had been slumbering for unknown ages, suddenly burst into violent eruption, which, while it carried devastation all around the beautiful gulf, buried the two cities of Herculaneum and Pompeii under dense beds of cinders and ashes.
Pompeii was merely covered with a bed of lighter substances, cinders, small stones and ashes, which fell in a dry state, while at Herculaneum the same substances, being drenched with water, hardened into a sort of tuf a, which in places is 65 ft.
But exceptions are found on the west in the street leading from the Porta Ercolanese (gate of Herculaneum) to the forum, which, though it must have been one of the principal thoroughfares in the city, was crooked and irregular, as well as very narrow, in some parts not exceeding 12 to 14 ft.
Of the numerous works of art discovered in the course of the excavations the statues and large works of sculpture, whether in marble or bronze, are inferior to those found at Herculaneum, but some of the bronze statuettes are of exquisite workmanship, while the profusion of ornamental works and objects in bronze and the elegance of their design, as well as the finished beauty of their execution, are such as to excite the utmost admiration - more especially when it is considered that these are the casual results of the examination of a second-rate provincial town, which had, further, been ransacked for valuables (as Herculaneum had not) after the eruption of 79.
Outside the Porta Ercolanese, or gate leading to Herculaneum, is found a house of a different character from all the others, which from its extent and arrangements was undoubtedly a suburban villa, belonging to a person of considerable fortune.Advertisement
There appears to have been in the same quarter a considerable suburb, outside the gate, extending on each side of the road towards Herculaneum, apparently much resembling those which are now found throughout almost the whole distance from thence to Naples.
The brief notices of the classical writers inform us that Herculaneum' was a small city of Campania between Neapolis and Pompeii, that it was situated between two streams at the foot of Vesuvius on a hill overlooking the sea, and that its harbour was at all seasons safe.
According to the commonest account, on the 23rd of August of that year Pliny the elder, who had command of the Roman fleet at Misenum, set out to render assistance to a young lady of noble family named Rectina and others dwelling on that coast, but, as there was no escape by sea, the little harbour having been on a sudden filled up so as to be inaccessible, he was obliged to abandon to their fate those people of Herculaneum who had managed to flee from their houses, overwhelmed in a moment by the material poured forth by Vesuvius.
From Torre Annunziata (which is believed to be the site of the ancient Oplontii) to San Giovanni a Teduccio, for a distance of about 9 m., there flowed a muddy eruption which in Herculaneum and the neighbouring places, where it was most abundant, raised the level of the country more than 65 ft.
In the part of Herculaneum already excavated the corridors in the upper portions of the theatre are compactly filled, up to the head of the arches, with pozzolana and pumice transformed into tufa (which proves that the formation of this stone may take place in a comparatively short time).Advertisement
The name of Herculaneum, which for some time remained attached to the site of the disaster, is mentioned in the later itineraries; but in the course of the middle ages all recollection of it perished.
First of all Monsignor Bayardi was brought from Rome and commissioned to write about the antiquities which were being collected in the museum at Portici under the care of Camillo Paderni, and when it was recognized that the prelate had not sufficient learning, and by the progress of the excavations other most abundant material was accumulated, about which at once scholars and courtiers were anxious to be informed, Bernardo Tanucci, having become secretary of state in 1755, founded the Accademia Ercolanese, which published the principal works on Herculaneum (Le Pitture ed i bronzi d'Ercolano, 8 vols., 1757, 1792; Dissertationis isagogicae ad Herculanensium voluminum explanationem pars prima, 1797).
After the death of Alcubierre (1780) the last-named was appointed director-in-chief of the excavations; but from that time the investigations at Herculaneum were intermitted, and the researches at Pompeii were vigorously carried on.
Resumed in 1827, the excavations at Herculaneum were shortly after suspended, nor were the new attempts made in 1866 with the money bestowed by King Victor Emmanuel attended with success, being impeded by the many dangers arising from the houses built overhead.
Notwithstanding subsequent discoveries of stupendous paintings in the gardens of the Villa Farnesina on the banks of the Tiber, the monochromes of Herculaneum remain among the finest specimens of the exquisite taste and consummate skill displayed by the ancient artists.Advertisement
But a still further discovery made in the Villa Suburbana contributed to magnify the greatness of Herculaneum; within its walls was found the famous library, of which, counting both entire and fragmentary volumes, 1803 papyri are preserved.
Among the nations which took the greatest interest in the discovery of the Herculaneum library, the most honourable rank belongs to England, which sent Hayter and other scholars to Naples to solicit the publication of the volumes.
There are in the library some volumes written in Latin, which, according to Boot (Notice sur les manuscrits trouves a Herculaneum, Amsterdam, 1845), were found tied up in a bundle apart.
Among the older works relating to Herculaneum, in addition to those already quoted, may be mentioned de Brosses, Lettre sur l'etat actuel de la y ule souterraine d'Heraclea (Paris, 1750); Seigneux de Correvon, Lettre sur la decouverte de l'ancienne ville d'Herculane (Yverdon, 1770); David, Les Antiquites d'Herculaneum (Paris, 1780); D' Ancora Gaetano, Prospetto storico-fisico degli scavi d'Ercolano e di Pompei (Naples, 1803); Venuti, Prime Scoverte di Ercolano (Rome, 1748); and Romanelli, Viaggio ad Ercolano (Naples, 181 I).
Shoobridge, Herculaneum, Past, Present and Future (London, 1908); it contains full references to the history and the explorations, and to the buildings and objects found (with illustrations).Advertisement
Barker's Buried Herculaneum (1908) is exceedingly useful.
In 1818, when he was created a baronet, he was commissioned by the British government to examine the papyri of Herculaneum in the Neapolitan museum, and he did not arrive back in England till June 1820.
The Greek anthology contains thirty-four of his epigrams. From the excavations of the villa at Herculaneum there have been recovered thirtysix treatises attributed to Philodemus, and it has been suggested that the villa was actually owned by him; but this is generally denied.
Its foundation was ascribed by Greek tradition to Heracles, in common with the neighbouring city of Herculaneum, but it is certain that it was not a Greek colony, in the proper sense of the term, as we know to have been the case with the more important cities of Cumae and Neapolis.
The opinion that immediately after the first outbreak of Vesuvius a torrent of lava was ejected over Herculaneum was refuted by the scholars of the 18th century, and their refutation is confirmed by Beule (Le Drame du Vesuve, p. 240 seq.).Advertisement
From this flat, between the sea and the range of the Apennines, rises Mount Vesuvius, at the base of which, on or near the sea-shore, are the populous villages of San Giovanni Teduccio, Portici, Resina, Torre del Greco, Torre dell' Annunziata, &c., and the classic sites of Herculaneum and Pompeii.