Routledge – 2006 – 408 pages
Resurrecting Pompeii provides an in-depth study of a unique site from antiquity with information about a population who all died from the same known cause within a short period of time.
Pompeii has been continuously excavated and studied since 1748. Early scholars working in Pompeii and other sites associated with the AD 79 eruption of Mount Vesuvius were seduced by the wealth of artefacts and wall paintings yielded by the site. This meant that the less visually attractive evidence, such as human skeletal remains, were largely ignored.
Recognizing the important contribution of the human skeletal evidence to the archaeology of Pompeii, Resurrecting Pompeii remedies that misdemeanour, and provides students of archaeology and history with an essential resource in the study of this fascinating historical event.
'Resurrecting Pompeii is a remarkable book' – Times Literary Supplement
'Those who have been lucky enough to hear Estelle lecture will not be surprised by the clarity and pervading logic of her narrative, nor by the touches of quirky humour that emerge. From the first page the tone is a ‘double whammy’, both engaging and scholarly.' – Dennis Mootz, NSW History Teacher's Association, Australia
Part 1: The Last Days of Pompeii 1. Skeletons as artefacts 2. An Egyptian interlude 3. An anthropological resource 4. Context of a mass disaster Part 2: The Victims 5. The nature of the evidence 6. Attribution of sex 7. Determination of age at death 8. General health and lifestyle indicators 9. The population 10. The casts 11. Making sense Appendices Bibliography Index
Estelle Lazer is an honorary associate at the University of Sydney. Her research interests include forensic archaeology and Antarctic cultural heritage management. She has spent seven field seasons working on the human skeletal remains at Pompeii.