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House of Venus
in the Shell
Location: Regio II
Area: 667 square meters
The House of Venus on the Shell or in the Shell stands on Via
dell Abbondanza one of the most important streets of the city. At
the time of the destruction of Pompeii, the House of Venus in the
Shell was the property of D. Lucretii Satrii Valentes.
Archaeologists discovered and studied this building in 1933-35 years
of the last century. During the war, the Allied bombers dropped
several bombs on this building. In 1952, archaeologists excavated
the buildings completely and restored the building of the House of
House of Venus in
the Shell is named after one of the most famous frescoes that came to
symbolize not only art of Pompeii, but all of Roman Empire. House of Venus in the Shell stands on the Via dell'Abbondanza street. It
is also known as the H. of D. Lucretii Satrii Valentes. It was
excavated in the 1930's. It is most prominent for beautiful frescoes
that covered walls of this residence. It is one of the most recognizable
pictures from Pompeii. The most splendid example
is that of goddess of love, Venus lying on a conch shell, while nymphs
tending for her.
A small corridor leads to a square atrium or
living room of the house (b) with a central imluvium, indoor pool.
Water got here through a hole in the roof. The atrium lost most of
its frescoes and plaster, but large remnants of gypsum show that it
was decorated with red and yellow panels above the bottom black
frieze. On the north side of the atrium, on either side of the
entrance, there are two cubals or rooms that have lost most of their
The third cubulum (d) opens from the
southeast corner of the atrium. The room is decorated with frescoes
in the third style with framed white panels, separated by fantastic
architectural views over the bottom dark red frieze. The central
panel of the south wall contains the heavily faded mythological
scene of Hermes and Dionysus. The side panels on the north wall
contain pieces, and in the east there are two medallions.