On February 5, A.D. 62, Pompeii was the epicenter of a severe earthquake that caused considerable structural damage to buildings and the infrastructure of the city. A process of repair and redevelopment was slow and extensive, involving projects such as the embellishment of the Forum and the rebuilding of the Temple of Isis, and also attempts to re-establish the city's water supply, which had been severely disrupted.
Then again on August 20, A.D. 79, Pompeii was rocked by more earth tremors, although they didn't seem to have been as severe as the 62 earthquake. When springs in the area dried up the citizens didn't recognize that these were signs of the imminent eruption. Therefore when the volcano went off between noon and 1pm on August 24, it caught everyone by surprise.
Pompeii and Herculaneum were to remain buried for around 1,700 years. Survivors of the eruption must have decided that rebuilding on the site was out of the question, but some researchers claim that there were signs that for a time people lived in the ruins, and a fishing community probably existed at the mouth of the nearby river Sarno.
During the later Roman period, and into the Middle Ages, Pompeii was forgotten, apart from perhaps a remnant folk memory, only existing as a name for the area, La Cività.
Surprisingly there are still archaeologist working in Pompeii, and the Anglo-American Project in Pompeii or the AAPP is one group that has been doing it for many summers.
The University of Bradford in Britain runs the AAPP as a multi-disciplinary, long-term field project which also trains future archaeologists in a field school environment. Rick Jones and Damian Robinson direct the AAPP. Their project is not cleaning new areas of volcanic debris. Their priority in Pompeii now is to record,... [continues]
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