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myleslea

Jonathan Myles-Lea. British artist and photographer. "Quality is never an accident. It is always the result of intelligent effort" John Ruskin.

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The layout of the House of the Small Fountain, which is situated in an important position along via di Mercurio in Pompeii, is set in such a way that the beautiful fountain that decorates the garden at the back can be seen immediately from the entrance, so we can imagine the high social status of the owner. This precious fountain, which has recently been restored, is covered with colourful mosaics and shells and there’s also a bronze statue of a fisherman and a cherub at the front. All around, the side walls of the peristylium (garden) are frescoes with amazing landscape views painted only a few years before the eruption of Vesuvius. One depicts a beautiful seaside town, which was a very popular theme at the time. The house was excavated in 1826-1827. at Pompeii - Parco Archeologico

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Beautifully preserved mosaics depicting a boar being attacked by dogs in the fauces (entrance or vestibule) and the atrium of a house in Pompeii. You can see the shallow pool (impluvium) in the centre of the atrium, then the dining room (triclinium) beyond. In the background you can see the colonnaded garden (peristyle). at Pompeii - Parco Archeologico

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A figure of Hercules supports an architrave at the end of a row of seats in the small theatre (the Odeon) at Pompeii. The Odeon was built in 80 BC. at Pompeii - Parco Archeologico

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The front seats at the Odeon of Pompeii - the small, roofed theatre designed for orations and musical productions. This is where the Roman senators would have sat. The marble is beautifully preserved despite having being cut and put in place in 80 BC and surviving the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 AD. at Pompeii - Parco Archeologico

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A three-dimensional reconstruction drawing of the Odeon (small theatre) at Pompeii. The stage featured five entrances on the back wall. A large palatial double door was in the centre, with two smaller double doors on either side. Two small single doors were located at either end. There is a large doorway that opens to a colonnade leading to the Large Theatre at the west end of the stage. Opposite this is a similar doorway opening up to the street. Behind the stage is a long dressing room or postscaenium. Following ancient theatre tradition, a machine used for suspending the gods and heroes was located at the left side of the stage. at Pompeii - Parco Archeologico

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Detail of the end of a row of seats in the Odeon (roofed theatre) at Pompeii. The Odeon was a smaller roofed theatre, theatrum tectum, that sat 1500 spectators built in 80 BC. The Large Theatre next door was used primarily for staging major dramas, the Odeon was intended for more intimate productions and for musical concert performances. The thin walls and rectangular plan indicate that the roof would have been wood rather than vaulted stone. (I love to get close to the details so I can study the photos later). at Pompeii - Parco Archeologico

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The marble base of the pool (impluvium) in The House of the Faun at Pompeii. Imagine this with 10” of water above it. How it would ripple! at Pompeii - Parco Archeologico

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Vesuvius - shrouded in clouds today - but this is direction from whence that deadly pyroclastic flow came on the afternoon of 24 August 79 AD. at Pompeii - Parco Archeologico

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Roman wall paintings depicting temples and colonnades at Pompeii. This is a rare survival and the only others like it are now in the archaeological museum in Naples. (Painted prior to 79 AD). There’s also a man fishing in this fresco too. It looks to me to be a representation of The Triangular Forum which sits on the edge of a spur of ancient lava and was probably laid out during the Samnite period to enhance the setting of the Doric Temple that occupied the southern part of the site. I may be wrong, however, as the temple depicted here is ionic. at Pompeii - Parco Archeologico

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Curved steps in the Odeon at Pompeii. The Odeon was a smaller roofed theatre, (theatrum tectum), that sat 1500 spectators built in 80 BC. at Pompeii - Parco Archeologico

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A spectacular golden bracket from the 1st century AD found in the House of ‘The Golden Bracelet’ (archaeologists gave it the name after finding this piece of jewellery there). The house is one of the richest villas from the western district Insula Occidentalis, which has been closed to the public for decades and cannot yet be visited as the entire complex is under restoration. This is one of the most valuable and beautiful artworks ever found in Pompeii. It was found on the wrist of a woman fleeing the catastrophic eruption of Mount Vesuvius that buried the Roman city in 79 AD. The piece of jewelry, which weighs 610 grams, is characterized by two snakes' heads holding in their mouths a disk with the bust of Selene, the goddess of the moon. The goddess is wearing a half moon-shaped tiara surrounded by seven stars, her arms raised to hold a veil.(Look at the eyes of the serpent). at Pompeii - Parco Archeologico

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Some photos of Pompeii. An extraordinary site, which is as probably as busy now as it was when Vesuvius erupted in 79 AD! at Pompeii - Parco Archeologico

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An icy plunge pool in the frigidarium in one of the thermal baths at Pompeii. The marble seating is beautifully intact. In fact, it’s one of the best preserved interiors in the city as the baths were not too badly damaged by the earthquake on 5th February 62 AD and I imagine the thick walls and relatively small windows helped it remain intact during the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 AD too. (This frigidarium has an oculus). at Pompeii - Parco Archeologico

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The famous bronze statuette of the faun in the impluvium (pool) in the atrium of House of the Faun in Pompeii. (The original is now in the Museo Archeologico Di Napoli). at House of the Faun

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Architectural details inside the fauces (entrance porch) of The House of the Fawn at Pompeii. The house was built in the 2nd century BC in the First Pompeian Style. It’s incredible that these very early stone and stucco details have survived and that they still preserve some of their original colours. at House of the Faun

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The sepia underpainting of one of my oil-portraits of country houses and gardens. To see more visit: www.myles-lea.com

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The red columns in the peristyle of The House of Telephus at Herculaneum. You can see exactly how these columns have been constructed and decorated just by looking at them. Various layers of cement have been added over a brick base structure and then a final layer of stucco has been painted with a paint which is as ruddy today as it was when Vesuvius blew its top. This way of creating columns was obviously in imitation of the more expensive limestone, marble or tufa versions we see in Rome. Rome was imitating the pristine marble columns of the Greeks, whose civilisation preceded and in some cases overlapped their own. Those roundels hanging between the columns are called ‘oscillas’ and they’re copies of marble originals which are designed to spin slowly in a gentle breeze. They’re carved on both sides and depict scenes of Bacchic revels. at Scavi di Ercolano, Herculaneum

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This is a Fourth Style Roman fresco depicting a riot that broke out in Pompeii in 59 CE during games held in the arena involving Pompeians and inhabitants of Nuceria. On the orders of Nero, this event led to the closure of the amphitheatre for ten years. The fresco was found in the house of Actius Anicetus in Pompeii and it’s now displayed at The Naples National Archaeological Museum. (If you zoom-in you can see gladiators in the arena), at Museo Archeologico di Napoli

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