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The Insula of the Menander at PompeiiVolume II: The Decorations$
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Roger Ling and Lesley Ling

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780199266951

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780199266951.001.0001

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(p.3) I. 10. 4: CASA DEL MENANDRO
The Insula of the Menander at Pompeii

Roger Ling

Lesley Ling

Oxford University Press

In its Final form, the CASA Del Menandro was adorned with decorations which can be ascribed (leaving aside a few which are too simple or too damaged to be classified at all) to the late Second and Fourth Styles (see Figs. 2–3). Remains from other phases will be considered in the next section but none of these were visible in AD 79. The First Style pavements and painted stuccowork in the rooms excavated beneath the floor of room 18 (Figs. 27B, 64; Pl. 1) had of course been buried before AD 79, and they probably belonged to a separate house anyway. A piece of a First (or early Second) Style dado carrying a curtain motif, preserved inside the cupboard 10 (Fig. 27A), belongs to a phase when this space was a passage; it would have been out of sight in subsequent periods. Other remains of similarly early phases in the atrium area are chance survivals beneath later plaster. The only remnant of a Third Style decoration (Fig. 93B; Pl. 15) is on a fragment of plaster found (probably) in the pit in passage P1; and it clearly derives from a painted scheme which had been dismantled before the final years. All that was visible in 79, then, was work from the third quarter of the first century BC and the third quarter of the first century AD—what we have classified in terms of the structural history as the end of Phase 3 and Phase 5. The late-Second Style paintings and stuccoes are confined to the southern arm of the peristyle and the bath-suite. In the peristyle there is a relatively well-preserved painted scheme of trees seen through arched openings on the walls of exedra 25 (Col. Pl. 39; Figs. 77– 9) and a stucco decoration with birds in spiralling acanthus tendrils in the semi-dome of exedra 24 (Fig. 89D; Col. Pl. 38; Pl. 13); it appears that a similar stucco decoration adorned the semi-dome of exedra 22, but only a fragment of this survives.

Keywords:   Albano Laziale, Boscoreale, Cori, Este, Herculaneum, Lanuvio, Marruvium, Ottaviano, Portici, Rome

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