The Garden Guide

Book: History of Garden Design and Gardening
Chapter: Chapter 2: Roman Gardens (500BC-500AD)

Pompeii Gardens

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50.Some idea of the town-gardens of the Ramans, about the beginning of the Christian era, may be obtained from the paintings rescued from the ruins of Herculaneum and Pompeii; the former buried beneath a stream of lava, and the latter overwhelmed by a shower of volcanic ashes from Mount Vesuvius, A. D. 79. The gardens in the paintings alluded to are represented as small square plots in front of the houses, enclosed with trellis work, planted with espaliers, and ornamented with fountains, urns, and other sculptured ornaments. Plants in pots and boxes appear sometimes on the walks and set in the windows; and over the doors may sometimes be observed climbers resembling honeysuckles. The walls which surrounded these courts may still be seen at Pompeii; but the largest which we saw in 1819, could not enclose more than a quarter of an acre.