What’s the Biggest Archaeological Find in History?:
Our choice for biggest archaeological find in history is not a stone, a scroll or a skeleton — it’s Pompeii, an ancient city located on the plain of Campania in southern Italy (find out how we chose Pompeii over all the other amazing places we could have chosen).
A little bit of context: Pompeii was founded in the 6th century B.C. and became incorporated into Rome by 80 B.C. As a Roman colony, the city bustled with life and activity, supporting somewhere between 10,000 and 20,000 inhabitants. Then a series of man-made and natural disasters struck the city. First, in A.D. 59, a riot between the Pompeians and the Nucerians erupted in the amphitheater. Next came an earthquake, which destroyed much of the city in A.D. 62. Finally, on Aug. 24, A.D. 79, Mount Vesuvius erupted and buried Pompeii beneath nearly 9 feet (3 meters) of ash, pumice and other volcanic debris.
The city lay undiscovered — and almost perfectly preserved — for almost two millennia. Formal excavations began in 1748 and have continued to this day.
Don’t stop learning here. Read on to discover much MUCH more.