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Pompeii and Herculaneum - Food and Dining

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D Gardiner

on 15 November 2012

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Transcript of Pompeii and Herculaneum - Food and Dining

Pompeii and Herculaneum Food and Dining Fishing Garum Pompeii and Herculaneum are located on the coast of Naples in Campania, south of Rome and the area was known for fertile land within Italy.The climate, with mild winters and an early spring, was ideal for agriculture and therefore food and dining were important. Garum was also known as fermented fish sauce and was one export Pompeii was famous for.
Garum was used as a dressing on top of a lot of roman foods and was kept in jars called amphorae. Fishing was an important source of income for Herculaneum and Pompeii. A large quantity of bronze hooks, fishing nets, sinkers and fish skeletons have been revealed at Herculaneum from burial sites close to the sea. Another piece of evidence discovered was that there were boats kept in sheds as many bodies were found trapped in the boat sheds of Herculaneum after the eruption. Pompeii had an estimated 28 bakeries and there have been many discovered at Herculaneum. Bakers often prepared their own bread by milling the flour. Carbonized remains of bread have found that a loaf of bread was a round shape formed into eight slices. Evidence has been excavated from the bakery of Modestus. Bakeries Meals Dinner The first course of cena, the gustatio (a tasting) comprised of eggs, olives, small fish or sausages with mustum, a type of wine to drink. Other dishes included broccoli, sausages, beans and bacon or a chicken casserole, also served with wine.The mensae seondae (dessert/second courses) was often grapes, pears, roasted chestnuts and cakes. Thermopolia The thermopolia were similar to our own fast food stores of today where they served hot food and spiced wine from the terracotta pots, which were heated beneath the marble counter. There were over fifty in the town (from excavated evidence). Please click the picture to start the video. Kitchens Kitchens called culina reveal that food preparation is evident in the cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum. Ancient Romans did not need large kitchens because in a common house cooking was done in numerous rooms of the house on small portable stoves. Food would have been brought fresh each day and some dishes would have been bought ready cooked from the many hot food outlets the thermopolia. In houses such as the house of the stags at Herculaneum and the house of the vetti at Pompeii, culina would be identified because of the fireplaces for cooking. Typical cookery containers included cauldrons, skillets and pans that revealed food was generally boiled rather than baked. Slaves would often cook and deliver the food to their owners in the triclinium. The Romans ate three times a day:
Ientaculum (breakfast), foods included bread, fruit and cheese.
Prandium (lunch) consisted of meats, eggs, vegetables and bread.
Cena (dinner) taken at dusk , was a larger quantity of food ending with fruit. Dining room The dining room was called the triclinium and is where the family and/or guests would eat while reclining. On the floor of some dining rooms were marks that indicated where the dining couches were placed. There were usually three of more couches according to the occasion. There was a series of small tables to hold dishes rather than one large table.

It was called the triclinium because of the three couches that were arranged there. The triclinium was usually placed near the culina. This made it easy for the servants to slip in and out, tending to the guests. The location also made it possible for servants to refill the table and ensure that the food being presented was neither too hot, nor too cold. Evidence for food and dining Graffito from the wall of the summer triclinium in the house of the Moralist in Pompeii shows a common family attending a meal. Organic remains were preserved in the archeological remains from Pompeii and Herculaneum.

Dietary remains were found in latrine pits and sewers. including calcium-phosphate mineralised seeds, small bones and marine shell fragments.
Latrines were usually in kitchens and were used for the disposal of both human excrement and kitchen waste. Professor Wilhelmina Jashemski’s extensive research has produced in-depth lists of edible materials from Pompeii, Herculaneum and the nearby villa sites. Problems for
historians Primary sources are the letters, histories and biographies, inscriptions and painted signs, labels on jars and graffiti on walls. Historians are faced with many questions that may not be possible to answer about primary sources on food and dining. These questions may include:
Who wrote the source
When was the source written
What are the limitations of this source
How reliable is this source.
A historian may also hold personal beliefs and therefore a bias in research may be produced. Gaps in evidence There are many areas of Pompeii and Herculaneum that have not yet been excavated and some buildings remain buried. Many historians create a question for themselves to answer, for example ‘what was the state of health of the population in Herculaneum?’ The historian then searches for material and evidence that may not be conclusive and use it in an argument to prove that they have answered the question. Often there is no one right answer but a number of likely or less likely possible answers. Historians may use evidence incorrectly to prove a point. For example Moeller and Jongman created two different conclusions using the same evidence. Bibliography https://sites.google.com/site/ad79eruption/, Destruction and re-discovery - accessed 13/11/12.
http://www.arch.ox.ac.uk/EAPH.html - School of Archaeology – University of Oxford - school of archeology, accessed 14/11/12
https://docs.google.com/viewer?a=v&q=cache:X7gQIgk61vcJ:faculty.musowls.org/gaglianod/Echlin%2520Thermopolia.pdf+thermopolia+pompeii&hl=en&gl=au&pid=bl&srcid=ADGEEShTHYV3RVc4Ya_cNs8pcee9bW- Kuriositas , Pompeii Fast Food Joint to Re-open After Two Thousand Year Hiatus, accessed 10/11/12
http://archaeology.uakron.edu/pompeii_site/Topics/rooms/triclinium.html - Archaeology. Akron , Pompeii on your desktop, accessed 9/11/12
Pompeii and Herculaneum, interpreting the evidence, Brian Brennan and Estelle Lazer - published in 2005 by Ancient History Seminars.
YouTube - Pompeii fast food- thermopolia. Introduction Mount Vesuvius is layered with a rich volcanic soil ideal for agriculture.
Crops grown in the local area included: grapes, wheat, barley, cabbage, broad beans, chickpeas, figs, olives and dates.
Olives were crushed and olive oil was produced. Agriculture Vineyards thrive in the rich volcanic soil. The type of wines sold and consumed in Pompeii and the surrounding origin can be identified from wine bottles called amphorae.
Amphorae were labeled, showing their place of origin and often the type of wine they contained.
Sources of evidence includes a Fresco from a Lararium in Pompeii showing Mt Vesuvius, and the god Bacchus of wine (picture in this frame). Wine Dinner The first course of cena, the gustatio (a tasting) comprised of eggs, olives, small fish or sausages with mustum, a type of wine to drink. Other dishes included broccoli, sausages, beans and bacon or a chicken casserole, also served with wine.The mensae seondae (dessert/second courses) was often grapes, pears, roasted chestnuts and cakes. Nathan Gardiner - Ancient History
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