In Pompeii, spectacular frescoes found under the ashes

In Pompeii, spectacular frescoes found under the ashes

The mythological scene is almost entirely preserved: seated on the ram with the Golden Fleece, Phrixos, son of Athamas, king of Thebes, flees his mother-in-law with his sister Helle.

They are “two fugitives at sea from ancient Greece,” observed Pompeii director Gabriel Zuchtriegel. This fresco is framed on a predominantly golden yellow wall decorated with delicate decorations in Leda’s house, in the heart of Pompeii (Italy).

The work was exhumed with other still lifes as well as portraits of women, represented in medallions in particular, announced those responsible for the excavations of the archaeological site on March 1, 2024.

Conservation through sedimentation

The sedimentation of volcanic ash, linked to the eruption of Vesuvius which buried the city in the year 79, made it possible to preserve numerous remains. These works still need to be cleaned and restored to ensure their consolidation. A complete plan is being reconstructed to detail all the rooms found in Leda’s house and two other neighboring residences.

The archaeological site, around a hundred hectares of which is classified as a UNESCO heritage site, is today the second most touristy place in Italy after the Colosseum in Rome. There are still twenty-two hectares buried underground, or a third of the total surface. Enough to continue to intrigue researchers and archeology enthusiasts for many years…

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