A busy commercial center with a population of 10,000 - 20,000, ancient Pompeii covered about 160 acres on the seaward end of the fertile Sarno Plain. The site of Pompeii, petrified memorial to Vesuvius's eruption on the morning of August 23, AD 79, is the largest, most accessible, and probably most famous of excavations anywhere.
Thanks to those deep layers of pyroclastic deposits from Vesuvius that protected the site from natural wear and tear over the centuries, graffiti found in Pompeii provide unique insights into the sort of things that the locals found important 2,000 years ago. A good many were personal and lend a human dimension to the disaster that not even the sights can equal.
At the bath: "What is the use of having a Venus if she's made of marble?"
At the entrance to the front lavatory at a private house: "May I always and everywhere be as potent with women as I was here"
On the Viale ai Teatri: "A copper pot went missing from my shop. Anyone who returns it to me will be given 65 bronze coins"
In the Basilica: "A small problem gets larger if you ignore it".