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Remains of Vesuvius Eruption Victims Discovered in Ancient Pompeii Shop

Jun 29, 2016 07:46 AM EDT
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3D reconstruction shows Pompeii banker's house before Vesuvius erupted

Archaeologists have unearthed four skeletons, which were believed to be victims of the Vesuvius eruption, in an ancient shop in Pompeii.

The skeletons, which were said to belong to teenagers including an adolescent girl, were scattered on the ground of the shop, together with three gold coins and a necklace pendant.

The victims were believed to have died in the back of the shop near the ancient Roman town when Mount Vesuvius erupted and covered the place in ash 2,000 years ago.

According to the Soprintendenza Pompei, the Italian authority that manages the ancient site, it appeared that the victims were trying to take shelter in the backroom of the shop, Live Science reported.

Looters seem to have disturbed skeletons on the site digging through the ash sometime after the eruption, leaving the remains in a jumbled mass, archaeologists said.

According to the researchers, the shop could have been a bronze workshop, as evidenced by the furnace discovered in the area.

The remains were found near the necropolis outside Porta Ercolano (Herculean Gate), which was located on the outskirts of Pompeii and opened onto a road to Herculaneum, a small city that was also buried during the Vesuvius eruption.

The recent discovery adds to the hundreds more that had been found at Pompeii since the 19th century. According to archaeologists, many of these bodies or body imprints were found in distorted death poses as many of these victims were believed to have died suddenly when the volcano erupted.

The ancient city looked frozen in time, and not only were the victims' bodies preserved but also wall paintings, graffiti and bits of blood, Live Science reported.

The research team led by French and Italian archaeologists has been excavating the site since May to find out more about the commercial establishments located outside the walls of Pompeii. The researchers have also excavated another workshop with a spiral staircase at the center, but they still don't know what the place used to be.

According to Mail Online, the great Mount Vesuvius spewed ash hundreds of feet into the air for 18 hours, which had fallen into the town choking people and covering buildings.

But on the next morning, the collapsing volcano caused a deadly avalanche of mud, which flooded Pompeii and buried the town.

In a report by Mail Online, archaeologists believed that more than 2,000 people had died. The town had been abandoned until its rediscovery in 1748 when many of the buildings, artifacts and skeletons were found intact under a layer of debris.

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