Archaeologists have just uncovered an extraordinary series of frescoes that set the scene of an enchanted garden in Pompeii, with paintings depicting peacocks, snakes, dogs and a wild boar, all of which have remained hidden for the past 2,000 years after the destructive fury of Mount Vesuvius buried them in 79 AD.
As the Express reports, site director Massimo Osanna explained of the recent excavations in Pompeii that “these extraordinary finds continue to thrill us,” calling the paintings something “marvelous and enigmatic that now must be studied at length.”
Archaeologists who have studied the enchanted garden frescoes believe that the painting of the two snakes that are shown coiled were placed there to help fight evil spirits who may be lurking in the home, while the scene of the dogs fighting a wild boar were most likely allegories depicting the fierce battle that is fought daily between good and evil.
Amazingly, the vivid red paints that were placed on the wall 2,000 years ago are in such fine shape that they don’t appear to have aged at all since they were first set in the Pompeii home. However, this is purely because they have been buried for thousands of years, and a site official noted that unless they were swiftly protected from the elements that the brightly painted colors will start to fade fast.
“These colors are intact because they have been buried all these years, but the light and atmosphere will fade them fast unless we protect them.”
The frescoes were technically located in what is known as a lararium, which is the name of a sacred area that the very wealthy created in their homes to construct special altars that were dedicated to their gods and in which holy offerings were made.
Excavations in Pompeii initially began back in 1748 and since then a multitude of frescoes have been discovered, while victims that were buried in the town were eventually extracted so that plaster casts could be created of them. So far, archaeologists have managed to fully excavate 104 acres of Pompeii, with 54 acres still left to go.
Fortunately for the world of archaeology, funding is coming from Europe which will allow this now, and many exciting new discoveries like the find of the lararium frescoes are sure to come in the future.
With the recently discovered enchanted garden frescoes that were just found in Pompeii, excavations will be continuing here along with plenty of preservation work.