During the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD, constant rainfall persisted for three days, which led to the volcano’s destructive path. Herculaneum, a small and affluent village situated on the northern side of the volcano and home to the village of Pompeii, had more time for evacuation compared to other cities.
Following the eruption, the city was buried under up to 60 feet of ash and mud, making excavation a difficult task. Nevertheless, the city has been well-preserved since excavation began.
In 1738, the Spaniard Rocque Joaquin de Alcubierre discovered the site, and to this day, excavation activities continue. The ruins are beautiful, adorned with rich mosaics and frescoes. Nearly 300 sets of human remains, including intact Roman skeletons, have been found in Herculaneum.
The excavations of Herculaneum
One of the most intriguing aspects is the Villa Dei Papyri, which once housed a library rich with Roman manuscripts, and was saved from destruction between 1752 and 1754. The Herculaneum papyri found in this library are currently being moved to the National Library in Naples, the French National Academy in Paris, the Bodleian Library at Oxford, and the British Library in London. As of now, the archaeological site is partially situated underneath Ercolano. The artifacts and scripts dating back to such an ancient time have been wonderfully preserved.