Vanity: Stories Of Jewel From Cyclades To Pompeii

Vanity Pompeii

Pompeii and the lives of its inhabitants have always been at the core of many a debate, waving from truth to fantasy, reality to legends. A way to pierce the mysterious veil of time that covers this immortal city could be now possible thanks to the brand new exhibition running from May to 5th August 2019, called “Vanity: Stories of Jewel from Cyclades to Pompeii”.

Vanity as an ephemeral pleasure always displayed through immense wealth, even in the Greek and Roman world, is indeed the theme of this unique refined even whose aim is to cast a light on the everyday lives of Pompeian upper class through the gems, necklaces, fibulae, earrings, rings and precious stones people used to wear back in those days. The city’s destruction in 79 AD has indeed preserved an extraordinary assortment of jewels, exceptional in terms of quantity and considered almost unique in the ancient world.

The display will include not only jewels coming from the ruins of Pompeii but also from other archaeological sites in Campania such as Longola, Sarno, Paestum, Oplontis, Terzigno and Herculaneum. The exhibition path has been designed to underline the contrast between the dark materials housing the display cases (evoking the tragic eruption) and the brilliance of the exquisite exhibit artefacts.

Vanity Pompeii

The exhibition is the blissful result of the collaboration between the Archaeological Park of Pompeii and the Ephorate of the Cyclades. The aim of the such a unique event  is to build a bridge between two civilizations, Pompeii and Delos, the Roman and the Greek world whose “vigour and prosperity, demonstrated by the numerous precious objects on display, are the expression of an expanding economy that united both cities” as said by the interim Director Alfonsina Russo. It is a fact indeed that the Pompeian region was a setting where the Greek and the Roman worlds entwined in a unique dialogue. “The jewels from Delos and in general from the Cyclades,” adds Demetrios Athanasoulis, Ephorate of the Cyclades and co-curator of the exhibition, “offer a more varied overview in terms of chronology and contexts of origin (necropolises, inhabited areas, shrines). Among Greek jewels, those from Delos are outstanding, in particular the ones from the inhabited area. They date from a period when there were close commercial and cultural ties between the Campania region and the island of the Cyclades, a free port frequented by merchants from all over the Mediterranean, with a massive presence of Italic negotiatores.”.

The exhibition will be housed in one of the most striking areas of Pompeii, which has long been destined to become an exhibition venue: the Great Palestra, close to the Amphitheatre and one of the symbolic highlights of the Roman city, will offer to all visitors a display within the display, a full immersion in the ancient world to deepen and discover the secrets of these two extraordinary cultures.

The exhibit can be included upon request in our Wonders of the Ancient Pompeii private tour or in any of our walking tour of the archaeological site.  




10th MAY- 5th AUGUST 2019


For further information, please visit the official website of the Archaeological Site of Pompeii


Leave a Reply