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Buried Cities, Volume 1

written by "Hall, Jennie, 1875-1921"
...n are green vineyards and dark forests dotted with white farmhouses. In some places there are high mounds of dirt outside the city wall. They are made by the ashes that have been dug out by the excavators and piled here. If you climb one of them you will be able to look over the city. You will find it a little place—less than a mile long and half a mile wide inside its ragged wall. And yet many thousand people used to live here. So the houses had to be crowded together. You will see no grassy lawns nor vacant lots nor playgrounds nor parks with pleasant trees. Many narrow streets cross one another and cut the city into solid blocks of buildings. You will be confused because you will see thousands of broken walls standing up, but no roofs. They are gone—crushed by the piling ashes long ago. At last you will come down and go in at one of the gates through the rough, thick wall, past the empty watch towers. You will tread the very paving stones that men's feet trampled nineteen hundred years ago as they fled from the volcano. You will climb a steep, narrow street. This is the street the fishermen and sailors used in olden times when they came in from the river or sea, carrying baskets of fish or leading mules loaded with goods from their ships. This is the street where people poured out to the sea on that terrible day of the eruption. You will pass a ruined temple of Apollo with standing columns and lonely altar and steps that lead to a room that is gone. A little farther on you will come out into a large open paved space. It is the forum. This used to be the busiest place in all Pompeii. At certain hours of the day it was filled with little tables and with merchants calling out and with gentlemen and slaves buying good's. But now it is empty and very still. Around the sides a few beautiful columns are yet standing with carved marble at the top connecting them. But others lie broken, and most of them are gone entirely. Thi...

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