house with the bronze Herma is one of the oldest houses in
Herculaneum and has an elongated shape. To the North of the entrance
to the Inn on Cardo IV street is the house of the bronze Herma. This
is a narrow rectangular building, and it can be considered as a
typical example of a small samnite house, which was previously built
up all of Herculaneum. The house is sandwiched between a Brick Altar
House and a wood frame House.
The house got its name from a bronze Herma found in the tablinum, a room that served as the office of the owner of the house, a place for personal meetings and storage of important documents. The Herma is a four-sided pillar with a sculpted head of a god, politician, or thinker. Historians believe that in this case, the Herma is a portrait of the owner of the house.
The corridor (a) leads to a square atrium (b) - a living room with rooms on its East and West sides. The Tuscan-style atrium has a Central alluvium or home pool for collecting rainwater. The walls of the atrium are decorated with frescoes in the third style with large red and black panels framed in light red, and the floor is covered with mosaics in the opus Signum style. It is interesting that on the Northern wall of the atrium there are two small Windows that consecrate the upper floors of the neighboring house, the house of Opus Cratitius. On either side of the corridor is a small cubiculum (C) and (d), and on the Western side of the atrium is a tablin (e) or dining room, which is laid out in the opus sectile. The tablin is decorated with frescoes in the third style almost as well as the atrium.