I read several books in preparation for a holiday in Naples area. This one is by far the best one I read about Herculaneum; if you have time to read only one book about this town, this is the one.
The illustrations are beautiful , the maps and drawings clear and useful and most importantly the story of the town is treated comprehensively starting with the geology of the area, the "politics" of archaeology, and then the story of the town as it was revealed by the digging ups . It finishes with an estimation of the future challenges in the conservation of this window into our past.
The story flows and it was easily accessible and fascinating for a layman like me. Behind every row, I felt the warm smile of the author (which I know from several BBC documentaries) with his passion and deep knowledge of the roman history.
Anyone interested in the other Pompeii i.e Herculean if you get one book on this fasternating Roman town then Andrew Wallace Hadrill book Herculean past and future is the book to buy. It full of colourful pictures and fasternating information covering everything from archaeological excavations done on the site past and presents. Loads of insightful information on Herculean buildings and of coursse the people as well. Its also a great academic source on Herculean its easy to read and even though I haven't been to Herculean I felt transported there by simply reading this massive book. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in knowing more about the other pompeii
i recently visited Herculaneum and Pompeii and this book was recommended by both my tour company and follow travellers. I bought it on my return and found that it greatly enhanced the experience of visiting the site. I particularly liked some of the discussion about what had happened to the site in the past and how previous archaeologists had moved artefacts to make more sense of the site. A great book ideal for reading both before and after a visit.
The photos, particularly those which give a panaromic view, are really interesting. A geat present for anyone about to visit the site.
This book is indispensable for anyone planning to visit Herculaneum, or simply is interested in Roman history. It's a comprehensive account of what is known and what is not known about the site. It tells you about the history of the Roman town, the eruption in 79 AD, its fate since, with the discoveries and mistakes of archaeologists, princes and others. It explains individual buildings and their contents. And it's all written in clear prose, as free of jargon as it can be. I ripped out the plan at the back to take it on our visit: very useful though a desceration!
I have recently returned from Naples having paid a visit to Herculaneum ( Ercolano). The book shop at the site was closed and looked to have been so for some time.I therefore decided to wait and purchase a book on the subject when I returned home rather than from a Naples bookshop. I am so glad I did because this book is an absolute treasure. The photographs, sometimes on double fold outs, are stunning, the diagrams informative and the prose readable and yet manifestly erudite and engaging.
I bought this as a Christmas present for a friend who had honeymooned in Italy after seeing a celebrity recommendation in a newspaper. She and her husband haven't stopped talking about it since. The book is filled with great photos to give you even more detail than you can see in a single visit to the place itself and then the text fills you in on the stories and facts. I'd highly recommend it for anyone who has visited the place and is inspired to want to see more.