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Pompeii‎ > ‎Regio V‎ > ‎Reg V, Ins 1‎ > ‎

House of the Epigrams

Description of the House (Reg V, Ins 1, 18, 11, 12)

The house, first excavated in 1748 and again in 1875 and 1908, derives its name from the Greek inscriptions seen under several of the frescoes in the exedra (k) on the north side of the peristyle.
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The fauces
(a) opens off the east side of the Via del Vesuvio. The walls of the fauces retain some patches of plasterwork but these are far too weathered to allow any description of the original decoration. The fauces leads to a rectangular atrium (b) (pictured below) which has a central impluvium. Along the north side of the atrium are two cubicula (c) which are in rather poor condition having lost much of their original decoration.

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An exedra (f) on the west side of the peristyle retains some of its decoration which was composed of alternating red and yellow panels with occasional mythological scenes.
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Along the north side of the peristyle a series of exedra (h) - (k) overlook the garden court. Room (I) retains some of its original fourth style decoration of red panels above a lower black frieze. Set in the central panel of each wall was a mythological scene. The picture (right) is from the rear (north) wall.
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Room (j) is decorated with alternating panels of red and yellow, but it, like most of the house has suffered a loss of plasterwork and fresco detail.
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The tablinum (d) in the centre of the east side of the atrium is similarly distressed with only plaster remnants to hint at the original fresco decoration. A third cubiculum opens off the south east corner of the atrium.
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The tablinum leads through to a three sided peristyle (e) (pictured lower left, viewed from the tablinum). The picture below of a Satyr and Maenad was in the peristyle but little now remains of any decoration. (The fresco can be seen in the National Archaeological Museum in Naples).
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The triclinium (g), like most of the house, is in a poor state of repair due to long exposure to the elements and only fragments of plaster now remain to testify to its original decoration. The fresco of the bird with the snake pictured left was from the triclinium and can be viewed in the National Archaeological Museum in Naples.
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Probably the best preserved of these exedra is room (k) in the north east corner of the peristyle (pictured left). Several of the scenes, including that on the left of the photograph of Pan and Eros wrestling, are annotated with Greek texts.
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The kitchen and latrine can be found in the north east of the property next to a posticum (l) and a flight of stairs to the upper floor.


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Images ©Jackie and Bob Dunn are reproduced by permission from their website at www.pompeiiinpictures.com
(Su concessione del Ministero per i Beni e le Attività Culturali: Soprintendenza Speciale per i Beni Archeologici di Napoli e Pompei)





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