"if there exists a place in the world where the paths of history and mythology, religion and history, the grand tour, literature, the arts and natural science all intertwine, then it is vesuvius: the mountain of unrivalled horrors and wonders” [dieter richter]
the most famous volcano in the world, the protagonist of over two thousand years of natural, man-made and social transformations that still capture the collective imagination and threaten more surprises.
from prehistory to the present, the ‘mountain of fire’ has become the icon of naples, its energy venerated over the centuries as a tutelary deity, due to the fertility of the soil nourished by its changing moods and volcanic ash, and as an implacable destroyer, due to the violence of its eruptions.
an extensive and carefully documented journey ranging from the roman cities of pompeii, herculaneum and stabiae, buried beneath the eruption of 79 AD, to the middle ages, from the renaissance and baroque city to the first scientific discoveries of the eighteenth century, culminating in the twentieth century, from the most recent volcanic eruption in 1944 to the monitoring of the vesuvius observatory and the plans to evacuate the local population.
"take vesuvius away from naples, and the enchanted voice of the siren will have lost its sweetest songs…vesuvius is its heart and soul, it is the epitome of all the splendours of the bay" [renato fucini]
go to the vesuvio presentation at feltrinelli bookstore