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IX.6.5 Pompeii. House of Oppius Gratus. Rooms a to o and 1 to 3.

Linked to IX.6.4, IX.6.6 and IX.6.7. Excavated 1878.

Part 1                                        Part 2

 

IX.6.4-7 Pompeii plan.  Based on those in BdI as developed in PPM. 
The differences are that BdI uses Greek letters for a to e in IX.6.4 and PPM uses a’ to e’ and adds 1, 2 and 3 for the fauces, atrium and peristyle.
See BdI, September 1880, p.194.

IX.6.4-7 Pompeii. Combined plan. Based on those in BdI, and PPM.

The differences are that BdI uses Greek letters for “a” to “e” in IX.6.4 and PPM uses a’ to e’ and adds 1, 2 and 3 for the fauces, atrium and peristyle.

See BdI, September 1880, p.194.

The house at IX.6.5 is linked to house IX.6.4 by doorway from area “o” in peristyle 3 into room “z”.

 

The atrium, paved with lavapesto and with remains of inscriptions in white tesserae in its flooring, (near the tufa impluvium on its western side towards the entrance corridor).

Three rooms were situated on each side of the atrium, “b”, “c”, “d” on the north, and “I”, “k”, “i” on the south.

To the west of the atrium were the two large triclinia “a” and “m”.

Rooms “d” and “i” were initially the alae then transformed, the one with the addition of a wall towards the atrium and the other with the addition of the stairs to the upper floor.

The peristyle was entered from the tablinum “g”.

The small room “e”, the corridor “f” and the oecus “h” also all opened onto the peristyle.

 

The rooms “n” and “o”, closed by thin partitions, were not preserved but were well recognizable at the time of the excavation by the traces in the floor. The poor plastering of the walls of the peristyle in simple Opus signinum, and the possibility to access it directly from posticum IX.6.7, made the archaeologists think that an industrial or commercial activity had been carried out in here, at least in the last period of its use; the remains of a previous well-refined preparatory plaster in the southern arm, and speckled to make the final decoration adhere, indicated a residential use at an earlier stage.

 

The eastern rooms, the kitchen “p” with hearth and a basin/tub, the latrine “q”, the cupboards/storerooms “r” and “s” are all described in IX.6.7.

Rooms “v”, “w”, “x”, “y”, and “z” and a’ to e’ on the plan, are all described in IX.6.4.

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Entrance fauces or corridor, with remains of painted red zoccolo.
According to Della Corte, this beautiful and spacious dwelling house was in the course of radical transformation at the moment of its burial by Vesuvius.
At least this was the idea of the excavators, because of the non-decorated rustic looking walls.
There was also a concentration of domestic instruments found in small rooms off the atrium, and especially in the second cubicle to the left of the entrance.  
A technical instrument, a circinus (drafting compass), found in the house gave the profession of Gratus, he was an architect. 
See Della Corte, M., 1965. Case ed Abitanti di Pompei. Napoli: Fausto Fiorentino. (p.164).
See Notizie degli Scavi di Antichità, 1879, p.45.

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Entrance fauces or corridor, with remains of painted red zoccolo.

According to Della Corte, this beautiful and spacious dwelling house was in the course of radical transformation at the moment of its burial by Vesuvius.

At least this was the idea of the excavators, because of the non-decorated rustic looking walls.

There was also a concentration of domestic instruments found in small rooms off the atrium, and especially in the second cubicle to the left of the entrance. 

A technical instrument, a circinus (drafting compass), found in the house gave the profession of Gratus, he was an architect.

See Della Corte, M., 1965. Case ed Abitanti di Pompei. Napoli: Fausto Fiorentino. (p.164).

See Notizie degli Scavi di Antichità, 1879, p.45.

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Decorated floor in entrance corridor 1, leading to atrium 2.
According to Della Corte, the atrium floor in opus signinum composed the epigraph of the musivarius Felix.  This was in small tesserae of white marble along the west side.
Ave Quartil(l)a, da bis (iussus); Sal(v)us sis Gra(te).
Gratus Architec(tu)s p(ecunia) s(ua).  Ego Felix (musivarius) feci    [C.X. 8146] with Note 1 on page 164.  With this knowledge he felt he was correct in making the proprietor of this house, the architect Gratus and his wife Quartilla. The musivarius was Felix.       
See Della Corte, M., 1965.  Case ed Abitanti di Pompei. Napoli: Fausto Fiorentino. (p.164)           
According to Epigraphik-Datenbank Clauss/Slaby (See www.manfredclauss.de), this reads as -
Ave Quartila dab is Salv(u)s sis Gra(te) Gratus Architec(tus) s(alutem) p(atronae?) s(uae?) ego Felix [fe]ci(?)   [CIL X 8146]
According to PPM “found near to the impluvium on its western side were the remains of a very ancient floor, in this floor and towards the western edge of the impluvium and near the vestibule were seen two inscriptions. These were no longer visible at the time of Pernice (1938)”.
According to Mau, “preserved near the impluvium were the remains of an ancient pavement. In the front edge, in the more recent flooring, one could read the word HELLEN, made from white stones: to read it you must stand on the side of the impluvium. Another inscription made in the same way was in the same pavement along the front edge of the atrium; it began near the south-west corner and finished towards the north of the entrance corridor.”  It was published in Notizie degli Scavi, 1878, p.322, and said this -

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Decorated floor in entrance corridor “1”, leading to atrium “2”.

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii. Epigraph of the musivarius (worker in mosaic) Felix as shown in CIL X.
See CIL X, 1883, p. 968, no. 8146.
According to Della Corte, in the atrium floor in opus signinum was the epigraph of the musivarius (worker in mosaic) Felix. 
This was in small tesserae of white marble along the west side.

AVE QUARTILLA, DA BIS SALVS SIS GRA GRATVS ARCHITEC S P S EGO FELIX FECI

Ave Quartil(l)a, da bis (iussus); Sal(v)us sis Gra(te) Gratus Architec(tu)s p(ecunia) s(ua).  Ego Felix (musivarius) feci      [CIL X 8146].

With this knowledge he felt he was correct in making the proprietor of this house, the architect Gratus and his wife Quartilla.
The musivarius was Felix.       
See Della Corte, M., 1965.  Case ed Abitanti di Pompei. Napoli: Fausto Fiorentino. (p.164 with Note 1)           

According to Epigraphik-Datenbank Clauss/Slaby (See www.manfredclauss.de), this reads as -
Ave Quartila dab is Salv(u)s sis Gra(te) Gratus Architec(tus) s(alutem) p(atronae?) s(uae?) ego Felix [fe]ci(?)   [CIL X 8146]

IX.6.5 Pompeii. Epigraph of the musivarius (worker in mosaic) Felix as shown in CIL X.

See CIL X, 1883, p. 968, no. 8146.

According to Della Corte, in the atrium floor in opus signinum was the epigraph of the musivarius (worker in mosaic) Felix.

This was in small tesserae of white marble along the west side.

 

AVE QUARTILLA, DA BIS SALVS SIS GRA GRATVS ARCHITEC S P S EGO FELIX FECI

 

Ave Quartil(l)a, da bis (iussus); Sal(v)us sis Gra(te) Gratus Architec(tu)s p(ecunia) s(ua).  Ego Felix (musivarius) feci      [CIL X 8146].

 

With this knowledge he felt he was correct in making the proprietor of this house, the architect Gratus and his wife Quartilla.

The musivarius was Felix.      

See Della Corte, M., 1965.  Case ed Abitanti di Pompei. Napoli: Fausto Fiorentino. (p.164 with Note 1)          

 

According to Epigraphik-Datenbank Clauss/Slaby (See www.manfredclauss.de), this reads as -

Ave Quartila dab is Salv(u)s sis Gra(te) Gratus Architec(tus) s(alutem) p(atronae?) s(uae?) ego Felix [fe]ci(?)   [CIL X 8146]

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii. Epigraph of the musivarius (worker in mosaic) Felix.

According to Mau, “preserved near the impluvium were the remains of an ancient pavement. In the front edge, in the more recent flooring, one could read the word HELLEN, made from white stones: to read it you must stand on the side of the impluvium. Another inscription made in the same way was in the same pavement along the front edge of the atrium; it began near the south-west corner and finished towards the north of the entrance corridor.” 

It was published in Notizie degli Scavi, 1878, p.322, and said the above.

See Mau in BdI, 1880, (p.226)

 

According to PPM “found near to the impluvium on its western side were the remains of a very ancient floor, in this floor and towards the western edge of the impluvium and near the vestibule were seen two inscriptions. These were no longer visible at the time of Pernice (1938)”.

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii.  Detail of decorated floor in entrance fauces 1.  Photographed 1970-79 by Günther Einhorn, picture courtesy of his son Ralf Einhorn.

IX.6.5 Pompeii. Detail of decorated floor in entrance fauces 1.

Photographed 1970-79 by Günther Einhorn, picture courtesy of his son Ralf Einhorn.

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Tufa impluvium in atrium 2, looking east.

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Tufa impluvium in atrium 2, looking east.

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Looking east from atrium, across tablinum “g” towards peristyle 3.
The tablinum had been decorated in the IV style, and had a floor in Opus signinum with a net of meanders for the pattern.
The wall zoccolo had been black with one plant seen, and the middle zone of the wall had been painted red.
A statue of Venus Anadyomene was found in the tablinum on 8/10/1878.
Now in Naples Archaeological Museum.  Inventory number 111383.
See Marmora Pompeiana nel Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli: Studi della SAP 26, page 176.

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Looking east from atrium, across tablinum “g” towards peristyle “3”.

The tablinum had been decorated in the IV style, and had a floor in Opus signinum with a net of meanders for the pattern.

The wall zoccolo had been black with one plant seen, and the middle zone of the wall had been painted red.

A statue of Venus Anadyomene was found in the tablinum on 8/10/1878.

Now in Naples Archaeological Museum.  Inventory number 111383.

See Marmora Pompeiana nel Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli: Studi della SAP 26, page 176.

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Doorway to room “a” in north-west corner of atrium, oecus or triclinium.

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005.

Doorway to room “a” in north-west corner of atrium, oecus or triclinium.

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. North-west corner of room “a”, an oecus or triclinium. According to Mau, this room was a triclinium, and the decoration was in the III style. The middle part of the wall was painted black, and above it was some of the light architectural design of this style, painted without that elegance that distinguished it so many times. Paintings without frames on a black background of small landscapes with shrines, sacred trees, and sacrificing figures, were preserved on three walls (the north wall was devoid of plaster). A window in the north wall overlooked the small vicolo.
See Mau in BdI, 1880, (p.226-7)

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. North-west corner of room “a”, an oecus or triclinium.

According to Mau, this room was a triclinium, and the decoration was in the III style.

The middle part of the wall was painted black, and above it was some of the light architectural design of this style, painted without that elegance that distinguished it so many times.

Paintings without frames on a black background of small landscapes with shrines, sacred trees, and sacrificing figures, were preserved on three walls (the north wall was devoid of plaster).

A window in the north wall overlooked the small vicolo.

See Mau in BdI, 1880, (p.226-7)

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii.  May 2005. Doorway to Room on north side of atrium.

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Doorway to room “b” on north side of atrium.

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Window in north wall of room “b”, on north side of atrium.
According to Mau, this room had white walls and a square window overlooking the vicolo. 
In the lava threshold of the doorway were the recesses of two hinges and a bolt, in the left door-frame that of a cross beam to close the door.
See Mau in BdI, 1880, (p.227)

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Window in north wall of room “b”, on north side of atrium.

According to Mau, this room had white walls and a square window overlooking the vicolo.

In the lava threshold of the doorway were the recesses of two hinges and a bolt, in the left door-frame that of a cross beam to close the door.

See Mau in BdI, 1880, (p.227)

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. North-west corner of  room “c” on north side of atrium.
According to Mau, this room also had a square window onto the north vicolo, and also had white plaster on its walls. The stucco cornice moulding was preserved that was part of the First Style decoration. Preserved in the lava threshold of the doorway were the two hinges and the hollows of two bolts. The room, as also rooms “b” and “d” was used to store various objects, which can be seen in Notizie degli Scavi, 1878, p.323. Much glass, glass-paste, hard stones for carving, terracotta, and bone, were found.  Similar objects to those summarised were gathered in “b” and “d”, see Notizie degli Scavi, 1878, p.45
See Mau in BdI, 1880, (p.227)

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. North-west corner of room “c” on north side of atrium.

According to Mau, this room also had a square window onto the north vicolo, and also had white plaster on its walls.

The stucco cornice moulding was preserved that was part of the First Style decoration.

Preserved in the lava threshold of the doorway were the two hinges and the hollows of two bolts.

The room, as also rooms “b” and “d” was used to store various objects, which can be seen in Notizie degli Scavi, 1878, p.323.

Much glass, glass-paste, hard stones for carving, terracotta, and bone, were found.

Similar objects to those summarised were gathered in “b” and “d”, see Notizie degli Scavi, 1878, p.45

See Mau in BdI, 1880, (p.227)

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. West and north wall of room “c”, with stucco cornice moulding.

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. West and north wall of room “c”, with stucco cornice moulding.

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Room “c”, upper north wall with window.

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Room “c”, upper north wall with window.

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Doorway to room “d”, originally the north ala.
According to Mau, this room had a simple decoration on its walls in a style that was difficult to attribute to the III or IV style of decorative painting. 
See Mau in BdI, 1880,  (p.227-8)
A statuette of white marble Pigmy was found in room “d”, on 24/10/1878. 
Now in Naples Archaeological Museum.  Inventory number 120406.
See Marmora Pompeiana nel Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli: Studi della SAP 26, p. 178.

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Doorway to room “d”, originally the north ala.

According to Mau, this room had a simple decoration on its walls in a style that was difficult to attribute to the III or IV style of decorative painting.

See Mau in BdI, 1880,  (p.227-8)

A statuette of white marble Pigmy was found in room “d”, on 24/10/1878.

Now in Naples Archaeological Museum.  Inventory number 120406.

See Marmora Pompeiana nel Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli: Studi della SAP 26, p. 178.

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Looking east through corridor “f”, from atrium towards peristyle, on north side of tablinum. According to Mau, this corridor had rough walls, it was closed on the front side by a door with two shutters, of which the hinges and the two holes for the two bolts remained, whilst on the rear side there was no trace of a door.
See Mau in BdI, 1880, (p.228)

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Looking east through corridor “f”, from atrium towards peristyle, on north side of tablinum.

According to Mau, this corridor had rough walls, it was closed on the front side by a door with two shutters, of which the hinges and the two holes for the two bolts remained, whilst on the rear side there was no trace of a door.

See Mau in BdI, 1880, (p.228)

 

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Small room “e” in north-west corner of peristyle. According to Mau, room “e” had a simple decoration of white walls divided into panels by red and black lines.
See Mau in BdI, 1880, (p.230)

IX.6.5 Pompeii. May 2005. Small room “e” in north-west corner of peristyle.

According to Mau, room “e” had a simple decoration of white walls divided into panels by red and black lines.

See Mau in BdI, 1880, (p.230)

 

 

Part 2