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The Insula of the Menander at Pompeii: Volume 1: The Structures$
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Roger Ling, Paul Arthur, Georgia Clarke, Estelle Lazer, Lesley A. Ling, Peter Rush, and Andrew Waters

Print publication date: 1997

Print ISBN-13: 9780198134091

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198134091.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 14 June 2021

I 10, 4: Casa del Menandro

I 10, 4: Casa del Menandro

(p.47) I 10, 4: Casa del Menandro
The Insula of the Menander at Pompeii: Volume 1: The Structures

Roger Ling

Paul Arthur

Georgia Clarke

Estelle Lazer

Lesley A. Ling

Peter Rush

Andrew Waters

Oxford University Press

As stated in part one, the casa del menandro occupied more than half of the insula at the time of Pompeii’s burial; it is thus by far the largest property in the block. It also lacks a homogeneous plan, and had clearly gone through a complex (and partly unrecoverable) process of piecemeal development. These factors make it difficult to carry out any form of unitary analysis; such an analysis would inevitably be unwieldy and over-complicated. The folowing discussion will therefore break the property up into its constituent parts, examining each in turn before drawing the threads together and considering general aspects of the house, its development, functioning, and ownership. To aid the division come certain natural caesuras in the plan. The main residential core, focused on the atrium and the peristyle, is physically and functionally distinct from the two service areas, the kitchen quarter to the west, and the stableyard and staff quarters to the south-east and east. Each of these service areas is accessible from the peristyle, but each is ‘distanced’ from it by an approach corridor, and the second has its own separate entrances from the street, so could function to some extent as an independent unit. Each area, moreover, appears to have been acquired at the expense of pre-existing properties not physically connected to the Menandro; and any discussion of its structural history involves some consideration of the history of the neighbouring properties (for the stableyard area, for instance, it is necessary to include the one-room units I 10,12 and 13). Even in the central part of the house, there is something of a dichotomy between the atrium and peristyle complexes. This dichotomy is chiefly chronological, in that the atrium formed the nucleus of the original house, with perhaps no more than a small garden at the rear, while in the final house the focus had shifted to the peristyle and its surrounding rooms, even if the atrium and tablinum remained important areas of reception and passage.

Keywords:   atrium, baths, cart, dating, earth floors, garden, hearth, impluvium, jewellery, kitchen, lamps

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