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62 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Magical Lure of the Buried City of Pompeii
For all the fictional stories of the city of Atlantis, the lost cities of various cultures, and the sci-fi fantasies of destroyed kingdoms, none is as fascinating as the discovery in 1748 of the lost city of Pompeii. For centuries now archeologists and historians have studied and written about the glorious city that was buried by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD...
Published on November 15, 2005 by Grady Harp

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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars very poor quality binding
When I received this book and opened it, the binding literally fell apart. Thinking it was a fluke, I sent it back and ordered another copy. The same thing happened. It's not an inexpensive book. You'd think they'd take more care in the publishing process.
Published on December 25, 2011 by SallySue


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62 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Magical Lure of the Buried City of Pompeii, November 15, 2005
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This review is from: Pompeii: The History, Life and Art of the Buried City (Hardcover)
For all the fictional stories of the city of Atlantis, the lost cities of various cultures, and the sci-fi fantasies of destroyed kingdoms, none is as fascinating as the discovery in 1748 of the lost city of Pompeii. For centuries now archeologists and historians have studied and written about the glorious city that was buried by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD. While many books have been written about various aspects of the excavation, the speculation, the discovered art of Pompeii, they all pale in comparison to this majestic tome as superbly edited by Marisa Ranieri Panetta.

Different from the numerous 'travel guide' books that reconstruct with plastic overlays the city now excavated with the city as it once stood, Panetta has gather a staff of thirteen ecellent Italian scholars who each write brilliantly about a different aspect of this city still veiled in mystery. The book is divided into the following sections: Introduction by Panetta, The Discovery and History of Pompeii, Public Life, Religious Life, Commercial Life, Private Life, Lifestyles, Oplontis (an area outside Pompeii of fascinating richness), Mount Vesuvius and the Eruption, and a brilliant chronology, glossary and bibliography.

The tome contains many new, never before published photographs of the city and the art. But the overwhelming beauty of the book is in the design and copious foldout pages that allow for panoramic views. The color reproduction is first class. This is now the magnum opus and certainly the definitive book on Pompeii. Given that the visuals are splendid, the additional good news is that the commentary essays are excellent reading! Highly recommended. Grady Harp, November 05
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31 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Breath Taken away and not by Volcanic ash, January 22, 2006
This review is from: Pompeii: The History, Life and Art of the Buried City (Hardcover)
This is a miraculous book, unearthing the wonders and artistic and technical genius of a nearly vanished city. The sumptuous photographs are almost past-believing in their glorious Pompeiian reds and in the luscious details from every sandaled walk of the the city, from the contemplative to the erotic. A major generous addition is a four page foldout very suitable for framing inserted slyly into the back cover. Each essay is honest and lucid. This is the one book on Pompeii you should keep. I've jetisoned my others. It's a treasure. Treat yourself.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A huge book for a little price., February 18, 2007
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jeanne (St. Louis, MO) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Pompeii: The History, Life and Art of the Buried City (Hardcover)
Lots of wonderful pictures and information. I was really surprised. It's not a book you can bring along to Pompeii (it's really heavy and large). That was my orginal idea. However, it's filled with amazing pictures and details that I'll note and try to see. It will also be nice to have after my trip because there is no way I'll have the pictures that this book provides. I highly recommend this book for anyone interested in Pompeii or is planning to visit.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lavishly illustrated well written overview of Pompeii, March 19, 2008
This review is from: Pompeii: The History, Life and Art of the Buried City (Hardcover)
Owning many books on Pompei and having visited many times, I approached this book not expecting to learn anything new. I was wrong. There are many Pompei picture books that repeat the same old stuff that I am leery of buying any more. This lavishly illustrated book shows the ruins and artifacts in detail that you cannot see with a throng of tourists milling about or rushing past at the Museo Archaeolgico Nazionale in Naples.

Centuries ago, a visiting philosopher remarked: never has such a great tragedy brought such great pleasure to posterity as did the eruption of Vesuvius in A.D. 79. The city frozen in time by the ash of Vesuvius has opened a window onto life in the early Roman empire. Maiuri invented a technique for making plaster casts of space left in the volcanic ash by the decomposed bodies of the victims of Vesuvius. It is possible two millenia later to see death agony on the faces of these victims. One of these victims, a chained guard dog can be seen curled up, howling in agony while straining against the chain that binds it. The author details the thousands of graffiti discovered, some sexual, some politically-oriented, some are insults directed at rivals. Many of these give insight into scenes of everyday life that allow the modern reader to feel a kinship to Pompeiians that is lacking even in our understanding of day-to-day life a mere few centuries ago. The ancient Romans, lacking our Christian moral code, expressed themselves in ways that until recently were self-censored as being too sexual, too self-centered or amoral.

As a large heavy folio it is too large to carry to Pompeii as a guide book. Look to the Knopf guide to Naples and Pompeii for a portable guidebook.

Highly recommended. Above average photo reproduction. Well written. A worthwhile addition to my Pompeii library.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gorgeous Book!, August 17, 2007
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This review is from: Pompeii: The History, Life and Art of the Buried City (Hardcover)
This book is stunning! The photography is breathtaking. The first class photos are huge, many double fold out. The essays are thorough - written by specialists of Pompeii in a gracious, informative style!

The photographs primarily cover art: the amazing wall paintings, furniture, architecture, gardens, rooms, and possessions of wealthy Pompeiians. The photographic perspectives are superb! Not included are the tragic plaster figures of victims and a map of Pompeii. Nor is Herculaenium depicted.

Nothing has been spared to make this THE BOOK of Pompeiian art. It is a "coffee table" book... heavy and large. The pages are the highest grade quality, very thick and glossy. It looks, feels, and reads like it should cost well over $100 and probably does at fancy book stores. It's the nicest book I have ever owned.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic souvenir of a trip to Pompeii, November 23, 2008
By 
Marco (Bristol, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Pompeii: The History, Life and Art of the Buried City (Hardcover)
Don't bother buying any of the large paperback books that are hawked outside the entrances to Pompeii. They are all rubbish compared to this spectacular publication. With this book you will have a fantastic souvenir that will remind you of your visit to one of the world's great wonders.

Unfortunately, most of the houses illustrated in this book are closed, due to being unsafe as well as protecting them from vandals. But at least with this book you will be able to view the closed houses through huge, glossy photos. The text is very informative as well, so if you get this book before your trip, you'll know something about the city before you get there and get more out of your visit.

I don't think there will ever be a better book on Pompeii, so get this before it becomes a deleted title, and at Amazon's price, its an incredible bargain to boot! (By the way, this book retails for $150 in Australia where I'm from.)

Warning - this book is enormous. Its way too big to stand upright in any of my bookcases, so I have to store it laying down on one shelf. Make sure you have a place to keep it safe!
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pompeii:The History, Life and Art of the Buried City, January 11, 2007
This review is from: Pompeii: The History, Life and Art of the Buried City (Hardcover)
A wealth of info about Pompeii. A beautiful well done book. Huge so much is covered and so much of the art work.

I've been to Pompeii and I still get chills when I think about it. It truly is the most intense, incredible place I have ever been. Just the art work throughout the city that is still there in vivid color after being buried for all those years is amazing. I remember for example a very small house that had the most beautiful male frescos all over the walls. Art everywhere!

I am very impressed with this book. It gets into detail about the whole history of Pompeii.

Looks good on the coffee table. I recommend this book, however I recommend actually traveling to Pompeii you have to see this place for yourself. A easy trip from Rome. 3 hour train ride to Napels then change trains South towards Sorrento. It's maybe a hour and a half from Naples. Then the station says Pompeii get off and walk across the street. How hard is that?

Also visit the Miricle Church of the Madonna in modern day Pompeii.

Italy is the greatest place in the world. The most beautiful sights, the nicest people, the best food. (I am not Italian)
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Must Read and Must Own, March 16, 2006
This review is from: Pompeii: The History, Life and Art of the Buried City (Hardcover)
As someone who has studied Pompeii for years this is one book that has it all. Not for those who want a quick read but more a delicacy that is savored and enjoyed. Each page is a study in detail and time frozen beauty. The reader can easily understand the lives of the lost people and the beauty that was Pompeii. This is an absolute must read and own book that you won't want to share with anyone else!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book, December 16, 2007
This review is from: Pompeii: The History, Life and Art of the Buried City (Hardcover)
Like all the other reviewers, I think this is a great book. There is one thing nobody else mentions, however (that I would have known had I read the product information more carefully). This book is huge! It overwhelms the average size coffee table I have, but I can't bear to put it away.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars REVISITING POMPEII OVER AND OVER, September 6, 2010
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This review is from: Pompeii: The History, Life and Art of the Buried City (Hardcover)
AFTER A WONDERFUL VISIT TO POMPEII WE CAN RELIVE OUR JOURNEY OVER AND OVER THRU THIS WONDERFUL PORTRAYAL OF THE BURIED CITY. HOW WONDERFUL TO BE ABLE TO RELIVE WALKING THRU A CITY FROZEN IN TIME THAT DATES BACK TO BIBICAL TIMES.
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Pompeii: The History, Life and Art of the Buried City
Pompeii: The History, Life and Art of the Buried City by Marisa Ranieri Panetta (Hardcover - September 7, 2010)
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