Archaeology Magazine Archive

A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America

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Museums: Suburban Villa Life Volume 56 Number 5, September/October 2003
by Jarrett A. Lobell

[image]Frescoes from villas around Pompeii are on display at the Antiquarium of Boscoreale. (Courtesy Soprintendenza Archeologica di Pompei) [LARGER IMAGE]

A new show at the Antiquarium of Boscoreale near Pompeii, running through November 4, will allow visitors to this small museum the opportunity to see some of the rarely displayed artifacts and frescoes from the villas of ancient Stabiae, less than ten miles from Pompeii. Although seldom visited, the Villa San Marco, Villa Pastore, and Villa Arianna are magnificent and well-preserved examples of luxurious suburban homes of the first centuries B.C. and A.D. They are every bit as impressive as some of the finer houses in Pompeii and Herculaneum and contained some of the highest quality frescoes and luxury objects, many of which are on display in Boscoreale.

The exhibition, "Stabiae: Immagini tra Storia e Archeologia," ("Stabiae: Images between History and Archaeology") explores the villas, the fascinating story of their excavation, and the long history of this area dating from pre-Roman times to the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 79, when Roman wealth and influence in the area of the Bay of Naples was at its height. An added bonus is the Archeobus, which takes tourists from the museum to the villas themselves. For information on the Archeobus see

Click here for ARCHAEOLOGY's list of museum exhibitions.

© 2003 by the Archaeological Institute of America