Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Ancient Romans Unveiled: Pompeian Graffiti

I was just reading about the graffiti at Pompeii. It's an interesting combination of lame stuff (Saturna was here), sweet love declarations, rental advertisements, political ranting, jokes, and bawdy bathroom-stall style humor. It's a complete slice-of-life in an ancient Roman city.

Here's an article about it to place it context:


The article discusses  how graffiti in ancient Rome wasn't like it is today in say, New York or London. It was not something just delinquent kids do to deface things. It was something everything did both inside and outside of buildings for a variety of purposes.

The following is a link to some translations. Please note that many of these are extremely bawdy and/or sexual in nature.


This one just made me laugh because it was sublimely mundane:

"On April 19th, I made bread."

1 comment:

Cate Masters said...

Ha, loved that last one. Hey, maybe making bread was highly unusual for the graffiti artist.
I actually just renewed my Smithsonian subscription. Love that magazine.