Mozart &
Material Culture


Pietro Fabris, Herculaneum and Pompeii, c1770.jpg

Pietro Fabris, Herculaneum and Pompeii, c1770

Ancient Roman town below Mt Vesuvius, destroyed in the eruption of 79AD and rediscovered in 1709; major archaeological digs began there in 1738.

Mozart Relevance

On 9 June 1770 Leopold Mozart wrote to his wife: 'Next week we’ll be visiting the 2 buried cities [Pompeii and Herculaneum], where entire rooms from classical antiquity are currently being excavated.' The next week, on 16 June 1770, he wrote: 'On Monday and Tuesday [18-19 June] etc. we’re going to take a closer look at Vesuvius, Pompei and Herculaneum – the towns that are currently being excavated – and admire the curiosities that have already been discovered.'