Herculaneum is an ancient town lying 5 miles (8 Km) southest of
Naples, on the western slopes of Mount Vesuvius, founded, according
to legend, by the mythical Hercules (the greek Herakles).
It is of
Greek origins, as the place name itself indicates (from the greek
Herakleion, latin Herculaneum) and the town plan, very similar to
the near Neapolis. It was destroyed and buried in ashes, together
with Pompeii, by the eruption of the volcano Vesuvius in 79 A.D.,
and nowadays, Herculaneum is an important archaeological site.
Excavations began by accident in 1709 when some workers discovered a
wall which was later found to be one of the stages of an ancient
Today, we find well conserved wooden objects, furniture,
allowing us to record customs, traditions, and art from a Roman era.
Many of the artefacts now are housed in the National Archaeological
Museum in Naples, others in the local Antiquarium.