The garden wall surrounding the House of the Moralist, a popular stop for visitors, has toppled. Site managers say heavy rains caused the terrace around the wall to slide down, pushing over the walls. These walls were completely restored after being bombed in World War Two, so while the stones are Roman the workmanship is actually only sixty years old. With many of Pompeii’s walls being 2,000 years old, one wonders how many more disasters we’ll see.
The House of the Moralist gets its name from some pithy advice painted on the dining room wall.
“Wash your feet, and a slave will dry them. A cloth covers your couch; keep it clean!”
“Do not flirt with another man’s wife. Watch your language.”
“Don’t fight or argue. Otherwise, go home.”
These rules wouldn’t be out of place on the walls of some youth hostels I’ve seen.
So far nobody has been injured in the incidents, but several of the ancient walls line narrow streets often filled with visitors. Imagine what would happen if one of the walls in this photo fell down during opening hours.
[Photo courtesy user fisticuffs via Wikimedia Commons]