Nearly 2,000 Years After Mount Vesuvius Buried The Ancient Roman City Of Pompeii, Archaeologists Discovered A Large Banquet Hall With Frescoes Of Mythical Figures Painted On Its Black Walls

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Nearly 2,000 years ago, the ancient Roman city of Pompeii was buried in an eruption from Mount Vesuvius.

When the volcano erupted in the summer of A.D. 79, ash and debris covered the city and preserved it for centuries. Its ruins were first found in the 16th century, and since then, many amazing discoveries have been made at the site.

Most recently, archaeologists unearthed a large banquet hall with frescoes of mythical figures associated with the Trojan War painted on its black walls.

Per the Archaeological Park of Pompeii, the grand room provided an elaborate setting for entertaining and conversation.

Gabriel Zuchtriegel, the director of the archaeological park, explained that the walls were painted black to hide the smoke deposits from oil lamps that were used during entertaining after the sun went down.

“People would meet to dine after sunset; the flickering light of the lamps had the effect of making the images appear to move, especially after a few glasses of good Campanian wine,” said Zuchtriegel.

In one of the frescoes, Paris, the son of the Trojan king Priam, meets with Helen. Their union was what led to the Trojan War.

Another fresco depicts the god Apollo attempting to seduce Cassandra, the daughter of Priam.

As legend has it, after Cassandra rejected Apollo’s advances, he punished her by making sure that her prophecies would be ignored. For instance, her warning of the Trojan War was not taken seriously.

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