Hi my lovelies!
Today’s post has been already announced on the Facebook page a few days ago. The topic’s quite archaeological, namely the Villa of Poppaea.

The villa, situated in Oplontis (modern Torre Annunziata, more or less mid-way between Naples and Sorrento), was discovered in the late sixteenth centuries. It was excavated in the mid-nineteenth century. More systematic excavations were begun in the 1960s, which are still ongoing. The entire site hasn’t been unearthed yet, because part of it lies beneath modern buildings and roads.

Villa of Poppaea.
Villa of Poppaea.

The complex has been dated to the first century AD and was a villa maritima (seaside villa), likely intended for otium (holidays), though probably also oil and wine were produced there. It has been identified as belonging to Poppaea Sabina, wife of the famous Emperor Nero, based on an inscription on an amphora.

Garden in the Villa of Poppaea.
Garden in the Villa of Poppaea.

The Villa of Poppaea went through a major refurbishing in the first century AD, probably following the big earthquake of AD 62, and two or three other modifications. It sports beautiful wall-paintings in the Pompeian Second, Third, and Fourth styles.

Some frescoes in the Villa of Poppaea.
Some frescoes in the Villa of Poppaea.

The building has a number of big living rooms, one of which features a painting of a sanctuary of Apollo, theatre masks, peacocks, olive trees. It also has a bath complex partially decorated with a representation of Heracles in the Garden of the Hesperides, and a peristyle decorated with “zebra stripes”.

Peristyle decorated with “zebra stripes” in the Villa fo Poppaea
Peristyle decorated with “zebra stripes” in the Villa of Poppaea.

Moreover, an impressive two-story hallway, with clerestory windows as sources of light from above, leads to the villa’s eastern wing. This features a 60m-long swimming pool and entertainment rooms separated by painted garden rooms, which were decorated with real plants and open to the sky. Noteworthy are a tunnel, which probably connected the villa with the ancient sea shore, and big luxurious gardens that once perhaps held oleanders, apple trees, laurel trees, and lemon trees.

Hallway in the Villa of Poppaea.
Hallway in the Villa of Poppaea.

Have you ever visited the Villa of Poppaea? If so, I would like to hear from you. I hope you enjoyed this post and also hope to see you again soon on this blog. Ciao ciao!

PS: I also included a video with some of the pictures  I took at the site. Enjoy watching!

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