In the remains of a Roman house, archaeologists have discovered a room closed from the outside world in which slaves were forced to work in a bakery. The unearthed room is considered the most shocking example of slavery in Pompeii.
In recent months, archaeologists have discovered the building containing the slave cell in the ancient Roman city of Pompeii. The remains of three people were also found in this section. Pompeii was buried in a thick layer of ash in 79 AD after the eruption of Mount Vesuvius.
The bakery in which the slaves worked was located in the home of Roman citizens. They shared the space with donkeys. Archaeologists have discovered that slaves and donkeys had to grind the grains used to bake bread there. Donkeys did this by walking in circles for hours to power a windmill.
The part where slaves worked was completely closed from the outside world. It was a small space. Because the small windows were high in the wall, the slaves could not see outside. The windows were closed with iron bars. The only way to enter the bakery was through the house next door.
A sharp contrast to the part where Roman citizens lived
The discovered house gives archaeologists more clues about the daily life of slaves in Roman times. “The dungeon reveals the most shocking side of Roman society,” said Gabriel Zutstriegl, director of the Pompeii Archaeological Park.
The slave quarters contrast starkly with the part of the house where Roman citizens lived. In this section, archaeologists found the remains of many beautiful murals. This indicates the prosperity in which the free Romans lived.
The ruins of Pompeii are an important resource for archaeologists to learn about life in the Roman Empire. The eruption of Mount Vesuvius and subsequent ash rain brought life to a halt. The ashes ensure that human remains and relics remain largely intact. The remains of Pompeii are also a popular tourist attraction in Italy.
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