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By Peter Chrisp

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Although the original plants were destroyed by the eruption, their roots left spaces in the earth providing clues to what the Romans liked to grow. Some of the gardens have been replanted, such as this colonnaded garden in nearby Herculaneum. Roman house ≤ TRICLINIUM The triclinium, or dining room, was named after the three sloping couches where the diners reclined to eat. The platform would have been spread with comfortable cushions. Some houses had an outdoor triclinium, as shown here, where the family could enjoy eating out on summer days, as well as a main dining area indoors.

Such balls did not bounce, so games involved throwing and catching. This wall painting from a tomb shows two young men throwing a ball. In another game, called trigon, three players stood in a triangle, throwing balls to each other. Knucklebones Games were played with the knucklebones (tali) of sheep or pigs. For a game, players took turns to throw the knucklebones in the air. They would then attempt to catch as many as possible on the backs of their hands. As this pottery model shows, this game was especially popular with girls and young women.

They had covered their faces in a desperate attempt to avoid breathing in the poisonous gases. Among them were a mother with a baby, and a girl who had buried her face in a man’s clothing. These casts were made in 1966. Others casts have been made of furniture, food, and the roots of plants. Sunken container for food Family shrine ( lararium) ≤ Snack Bar This is a thermopolium, or snack bar, where the people of Pompeii would come to grab a quick bite to eat and drink a cup of wine as they went about their business in the town.

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