New Yorkers can travel back 2,000 years and get a rare glimpse of ancient Rome, as artifacts from Pompeii, a city that was buried in a volcanic eruption in A.D. 79, are now on display in a new Times Square exhibit. NY1's Roger Clark filed the following report.
Eerie reminders of an ancient Roman tragedy are on display at "Pompeii: Life And Death In The Shadow Of Vesuvius," a new exhibit that opened today at Discovery Times Square.
Full body casts on view show the residents of Pompeii, a city once located near modern-day Naples, Italy, as they were buried by the ash from the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 79.
"They fell to the ground and then very, very fine volcanic dust settled on top of them, and then it rained and formed a version of cement, so these people were literally encased in cement," says curatorial consultant Kristin Romey.
The show features some 250 artifacts uncovered from the ruins of the city.
"There are so few instances where we literally have a time capsule of a city, and Pompeii is it," says Romey.
Plenty of art from Pompeii is on display, including a fresco which depicts a scene in a marketplace, which archeologists believe was decoration in a bath house.
There are gladiator helmets and graffiti, everyday items like glass containers and money, and a look inside one of the city's more than 40 brothels.
"They had pigeons, they had graffiti, they had take-out restaurants that resembled the steam tables you see at the delis around here. Life really hasn't changed that much in 2,000 years," says Romey.
Author Judith Harris, who has written a book about Pompeii and is a consultant on the exhibit, says the show brings the Roman Empire back to life.
"What is so exciting about Pompeii is that is gives us a picture of daily life in classical antiquity. We haven't found that anywhere else in the world," says Harris.
The exhibit runs through September 5. Tickets are $25 for adults, $19.50 for kids and $22.50 for seniors.
For more information, visit DiscoveryTSX.com.