Pompeii Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to Pompeii. Here they are! All 100 of them:

To be brave, by definition, one has first to be afraid.
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
We are born into this time and must bravely follow the path to the destined end. There is no other way. Our duty is to hold on to the lost position, without hope, without rescue, like that Roman soldier whose bones were found in front of a door in Pompeii, who, during the eruption of Vesuvius, died at his post because they forgot to relieve him. That is greatness. That is what it means to be a thoroughbred. The honorable end is the one thing that can not be taken from a man.
Oswald Spengler (Man and Technics: A Contribution to a Philosophy of Life)
Keep your paws off my fiancèe, you flea-ridden stray!
Michael Buckley (The Inside Story (The Sisters Grimm, #8))
People will perish, but books are immortal. (Pompeii)
Robert Harris
What is leadership, after all, but the blind choice of one route over another and the confident pretense that the decision was based on reason
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
What they say is, life goes on, and that is mostly true. The mail is delivered and the Christmas lights go up and the ladders get put away and you open yet another box of cereal. In time, the volume of my feelings would be turned down in gentle increments to a near quiet, and yet the record would still spin, always spin. There was a place for Rose so deeply within myself that it was another country, another world, with its own light and time and its own language. A lost world. Yet its foundations and edges were permanent-the ruins of Pompeii, the glorious remnants or the Forum. A world that endured, even as it retreated into the past. A world visited, imagined, ever waiting, yet asleep
Deb Caletti (Honey, Baby, Sweetheart)
But then in middle school science, Mr. Martinez asked who among us had ever fantasized about living in the clouds, and everyone raised their hand. Then Mr. Martinez told us that up in the clouds the wind blew one hundred and fifty miles an hour and the temperature was thirty below zero and there was no oxygen and we’d all die within seconds.” “Sounds like a nice guy.” “He specialized in the murder of dreams, Hazel Grace.let me tell you. You think volcanoes are awesome? Tell that to the ten thousand screaming corpses at Pompeii. You still secretly believe that there is an element of magic to this world? It’s all just soulless molecules bouncing against each other randomly. Do you worry about who will take care of you if your parents die? As well you should, because they will be worm food in the fullness of time.
John Green (The Fault in Our Stars)
People perish. Books are immortal.
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
But only a fool sails into combat with nature
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
Don’t let yourself forget how many doctors have died, furrowing their brows over how many deathbeds. How many astrologers, after pompous forecasts about others’ ends. How many philosophers, after endless disquisitions on death and immortality. How many warriors, after inflicting thousands of casualties themselves. How many tyrants, after abusing the power of life and death atrociously, as if they were themselves immortal. How many whole cities have met their end: Helike, Pompeii, Herculaneum, and countless others. And all the ones you know yourself, one after another. One who laid out another for burial, and was buried himself, and then the man who buried him - all in the same short space of time. In short, know this: Human lives are brief and trivial. Yesterday a blob of semen; tomorrow embalming fluid, ash. To pass through this brief life as nature demands. To give it up without complaint. Like an olive that ripens and falls. Praising its mother, thanking the tree it grew on.
Marcus Aurelius (Meditations)
We are the centuries... We have your eoliths and your mesoliths and your neoliths. We have your Babylons and your Pompeiis, your Caesars and your chromium-plated (vital-ingredient impregnated) artifacts. We have your bloody hatchets and your Hiroshimas. We march in spite of Hell, we do – Atrophy, Entropy, and Proteus vulgaris, telling bawdy jokes about a farm girl name of Eve and a traveling salesman called Lucifer. We bury your dead and their reputations. We bury you. We are the centuries. Be born then, gasp wind, screech at the surgeon’s slap, seek manhood, taste a little godhood, feel pain, give birth, struggle a little while, succumb: (Dying, leave quietly by the rear exit, please.) Generation, regeneration, again, again, as in a ritual, with blood-stained vestments and nail-torn hands, children of Merlin, chasing a gleam. Children, too, of Eve, forever building Edens – and kicking them apart in berserk fury because somehow it isn’t the same. (AGH! AGH! AGH! – an idiot screams his mindless anguish amid the rubble. But quickly! let it be inundated by the choir, chanting Alleluias at ninety decibels.)
Walter M. Miller Jr. (A Canticle for Leibowitz (St. Leibowitz, #1))
Goddammit! How does the world keep spinning with women on the planet?" Ian St. John in THE POMPEII SCROLL
Jacqueline LaTourrette
Civilization was a relentless war that man was doomed to lose eventually.
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
That a thing made by hand, the work and thought of a single craftsman, can endure much longer than its maker, through centuries in fact, can survive natural catastrophe, neglect, and even mistreatment, has always filled me with wonder. Sometimes in museums, looking at a humble piece of pottery from ancient Persia or Pompeii, or a finely wrought page from a medieval illuminated manuscript toiled over by a nameless monk, or a primitive tool with a carved handle, I am moved to tears. The unknown life of the maker is evanescent in its brevity, but the work of his or her hands and heart remains.
Susan Vreeland
Pompeii has nothing to teach us, we know crack of volcanic fissure, slow flow of terrible lava, pressure on heart, lungs, the brain about to burst its brittle case (what the skull can endure!)
The destination of the journey could not be altered, only the manner in which one approached it - whether one chose to walk erect or to be dragged complaining through the dust.
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
The natural impulse of men is to follow, he thought, and whoever has the strongest sense of purpose will always dominate the rest.
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
I felt like she was seared into my time line, unchangeable as Pompeii.
Carmen Maria Machado (Her Body and Other Parties: Stories)
Amara looks at Dido, at the joy on her face, and realises there is nobody she loves more. Warmth spreads through her. She has never had a friend like Dido. She is the light in the darkness of her life.
Elodie Harper (The Wolf Den (Wolf Den Trilogy, #1))
The features of our face are hardly more than gestures which force of habit has made permanent. Nature, like the destruction of Pompeii, like the metamorphosis of a nymph, has arrested us in an accustomed movement.
Marcel Proust (Within A Budding Grove (In Search of Lost Time) (Volume 2))
A bronze plaque read: GAIUS PLINIUS CAECILIUS SECUNDUS Dan made a face. "Get a load of the guy with the funny name." "I think that's Pliny the younger, the famous Roman writer," Amy supplied. She bent down to read the English portion of the tablet. "Right. In A.D. 79, Pliny chronicled the destruction of Pompeii by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius. It's one of the earliest eyewitness accounts of a major disaster." Dan yawned. "Doesn't this remind you of the clue hunt? You know–you telling me a bunch of boring stuff, and me not listening?
Gordon Korman (The Medusa Plot (39 Clues: Cahills vs. Vespers, #1))
These trenches are like Pompeii, sir.
Ford Madox Ford (Parade's End)
You entered, Abrupt like “Take it!”, Mauling suede gloves, you tarried, And said: “You know,- I’m soon getting married.” Get married then. It’s all right, I can handle it. You see - I’m calm, of course! Like the pulse Of a corpse. Remember? You used to say: “Jack London, Money, Love and ardour,”-- I saw one thing only: You were La Gioconda, Which had to be stolen! And someone stole you. Again in love, I shall start gambling, With fire illuminating the arch of my eyebrows. And why not? Sometimes, the homeless ramblers Will seek to find shelter in a burnt down house! You’re mocking me? “You’ve fewer emeralds of madness than a beggar kopecks, there’s no disproving this!” But remember Pompeii came to end thus When somebody teased Vesuvius! Hey! Gentlemen! You care for Sacrilege, Crime And war. But have you seen The frightening terror Of my face When It’s Perfectly calm? And I feel- “I” Is too small to fit me. Someone inside me is getting smothered.
Vladimir Mayakovsky
For them, it was just an ordinary miracle.
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
I often feel like a resident of Pompeii who has been asked for some humorous comments on lava.
Tom Lehrer
Men mistook measurement for understanding. And they always had to put themselves at the center of everything. That was their greatest conceit. The earth is becoming warmer-it must be our fault! The mountain is destroying us-we have not propitiated the gods! It rains too much, it rains too little-a comfort to think that these things are somehow connected to our behavior, that if only we lived a little better, a little more frugally, our virtue would be rewarded. But here was nature, sweeping toward him-unknowable, all-conquering, indifferent-and he saw in her fires the futility of human pretensions.
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
In the darkness you could hear the crying of women, the wailing of infants, and the shouting of men. Some prayed for help. Others wished for death. But still more imagined that there were no Gods left, and that the universe was plunged into eternal darkness.
Pliny the Younger (The Letters Of Pliny, The Younger: With Observations On Each Letter)
There is only one world-view that is worthy of us, and which has already been discussed as the Choice of Achilles—better a short life, full of deeds and glory, than a long life without substance. The danger is so great, for every individual, every class, every people, that to cherish any illusion whatsoever is deplorable. Time cannot be stopped; there is no possibility for prudent retreat or wise renunciation. Only dreamers believe there is a way out. Optimism is cowardice. We are born into this time and must courageously follow the path to the end as destiny demands. There is no other way. Our duty is to hold on to the lost post, without hope, without rescue, like the Roman soldier whose bones were found in front of a door in Pompeii, who, during the eruption of Vesuvius, died at his post because they forgot to relieve him. That is greatness. . . . The honorable end is the one thing that can not be taken from a man. P 30
Ernst Jünger (On Pain)
What was leadership, after all, but the blind choice of one route over another and the confident pretense that the decision was based on reason?
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
The smallest evil if neglected, will reach the greatest proportions.
Pliny the Younger (Grafitti and other Sources on Pompeii and Herculaneum)
A nothing that said everything.
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
And the great thing about money is that it doesn’t matter when you harvest it. It’s an all-year crop.
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
... Mother Nature is punishing us, ..., for our greed and selfishness. We torture her at all hours by iron and wood, fire and stone. We dig her up and dump her in the sea. We sink mine shafts into her and drag out her entrails - and all for a jewel to wear on a pretty finer. Who can blame her if she occasionally quivers with anger?" - Pliny, Pg. 176
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
Brave words. Easy to write when one was young and death was still skulking over a distant hill somewhere... - Pg. 82
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
Thus the thermal energy released during the A.D. 79 eruption would have been roughly 2 x 1018 joules—or about 100,000 times that of the Hiroshima atomic bomb.
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
It looks so peaceful,” said Annie. “You can never be sure,” said Jack. “Remember, Pompeii looked peaceful before the volcano went off.
Mary Pope Osborne (Day of the Dragon King)
But if you close your eyes,does it almost feel like nothing changed at all?
Bastille Pompeii
You think volcanoes are awesome? Tell that to the ten thousand screaming corpses at Pompeii. You still secretly believe that there is an element of magic to this world? It’s all just soulless molecules bouncing against each other randomly. Do you worry about who will take care of you if your parents die? As well you should, because they will be worm food in the fullness of time.
John Green (The Fault in Our Stars)
There are other special problems connected with the discovery of ancient cities. Alexandria was ravaged by fires and street fighting, and its ancient waterfront is underwater. Some discoveries at Pompeii were not revealed for many decades, because the wall paintings are so pornographic.
Norman F. Cantor (Antiquity: The Civilization of the Ancient World)
Prisoner One: I'm sick of it here. I have dreams, man. I wanna travel up the coast, fall in love with a Babylonian woman and stone her to death when she menstruates. Prisoner 2: That does sound nice. But I think I prefer to serve out my time here and live a relaxing life in Pompeii. Maybe teach Latin to at-risk youth. You know, give back a little.
Jesse Eisenberg (Bream Gives Me Hiccups)
... that eternally restless, eternally unquenched desire for naked paganism, that love that is the supreme joy, that is divine serenity itself- those things are useless for you moderns, you children of reflection. That sort of love wreaks havoc on you. As soon as you wish to be natural you become normal. To you Nature seems hostile, you have turned us laughing Greek deities into demons and me into a devil. All you can do is exorcise me and curse me or else sacrifice yourselves, slaughter yourselves in bacchanalian madness at my alter. And if you ever has the courage to kiss my red lips, he then goes on a pilgrimage to Rome, barefoot and in a penitent's shirt, and expects flowers to blossom from his withered staff, while roses, violets, and myrtles sprout constantly under my feet- but their fragrance doesn't agree with you, So just stay in your northern fog and Christian incense. Let us pagans rest under the rubble, under lava. Do not dig us up. Pompeii, our villas, our baths, our temples were not built for you people! You need no gods! We freeze in your world!
Leopold von Sacher-Masoch (Venus in Furs)
[...] ma a Roma un uomo onesto era un uomo raro: cioè un cretino.
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
my Clodius, how little your countrymen know of the true versatility of a Pericles, of the true witcheries of an Aspasia!
Edward Bulwer-Lytton (The Last Days of Pompeii)
Oh, can these men love, my Clodius? Scarcely even with the senses. How rarely a Roman has a heart! He is but the mechanism of genius—he wants its bones and flesh.
Edward Bulwer-Lytton (The Last Days of Pompeii)
As if earthquakes aren’t as much a part of living in Campania as hot springs and summer droughts!
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
People who go to Italy to look at ruins won’t have to go as far as Naples and Pompeii in the future.
William Manchester (The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill: Defender of the Realm, 1940-1965)
People who go to Italy to look at ruins won’t have to go as far as Naples and Pompeii in the future.
Paul Reid (The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill (The Last Lion, #1-3))
Cleopatra’s Moon and Curses and Smoke: A Novel of Pompeii
Kate Quinn (A Song of War: A Novel of Troy)
If she wasn’t absolutely sure that it would turn out to be an emotional disaster of Pompeii proportions, she would take Sonja’s advice and climb that man like a tree. For science.
Molly Harper (How to Date Your Dragon (Mystic Bayou, #1))
Archaeologists will find them someday preserved for posterity like the bodies in Pompeii. Buried not under ash but lace.
Judithe Little (The Chanel Sisters)
morsels of tesselated pavement from Herculaneum and Pompeii, like petrified minced veal;
Charles Dickens (Little Dorrit)
If there was a volcano under their feet, a Vesuvius that could erupt and bury this modern-day Pompeii at any moment, the best thing to do was dance on it.
Deborah Davis (Strapless: John Singer Sargent and the Fall of Madame X)
Chris Colfer (Worlds Collide (The Land of Stories #6))
We were trying, as I irrelevantly analyzed it, to avoid what might be termed a historic mistake. We were trying to understand, that is, whether we were in a preapocalyptic situation, like the European Jews in the thirties or the last citizens of Pompeii, or whether our situation was merely near-apocalyptic, like that of the Cold War inhabitants of New York, London, Washington
Joseph O'Neill (Netherland)
I never got my Pompeii,” I said, low and even. “And you know I deserved every bit of it. But I’m not going to erupt all over you like I’m owed. Because I’ve already won. She’s not fucking you tonight.
S. Walden (LoveLines (The Wilmington Saga, #1))
At times I see them as if I were walking through the streets of Pompeii before the eruption of Vesuvius. This is one of the historian's delights and, even more, his sorrow. If we see someone doing something for the last time, even just eating a piece of bread, this activity becomes wondrously profound. We participate in the transmutation of the ephemeral into the sacramental. We have inklings of eras during which such a sight was an everyday occurrence.
Ernst Jünger (Eumeswil)
La cenere s'indurì, cadde altra pomice. L'interno dei cadaveri marcì e insieme a loro, con il passare dei secoli, marcì anche il ricordo dell'esistenza in quel punto di una città. Pompei divenne una città di cittadini vuoti dai contorni perfetti, stretti l'uno all'altro o isolati, con gli abiti volati via o sollevati sul capo, che tentano disperatamente di afferrare i loro oggetti più adorati senza riuscire a stringere nulla tra le mani: vuote entità sospese a mezz'aria al livello dei tetti.
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
When we’re really old, people in the future will interview us, because we lived through one of the biggest events in human history. Like the Spanish flu of 1918 that killed over 50 million people. Or the great depression. Or Pompeii. Or the Titanic.
Oliver Markus Malloy (American Fascism: A German Writer's Urgent Warning To America)
Nature, like the catastrophe at Pompeii or the metamorphosis of a nymph, freezes us into an accustomed cast of countenance. In the same way, the intonations of our voice express our philosophy of life, what one says to oneself at each moment about things.
Marcel Proust (In the Shadow of Young Girls in Flower)
BATHS WERE NOT a luxury. Baths were the foundation of civilisation. Baths were what raised even the meanest citizen of Rome above the level of the wealthiest hairy-arsed barbarian. Baths instilled the triple disciplines of cleanliness, healthfulness and strict routine.
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
But perhaps the most poetical thing Pompeii has yielded to modern research, was that grand figure of a Roman soldier, clad in complete armor; who, true to his duty, true to his proud name of a soldier of Rome, and full of the stern courage which had given to that name its glory, stood to his post by the city gate, erect and unflinching, till the hell that raged around him burned out the dauntless spirit it could not conquer. We never read of Pompeii but we think of that soldier; we can not write of Pompeii without the natural impulse to grant to him the mention he so well deserves. Let us remember that he was a soldier--not a policeman --and so, praise him. Being a soldier, he staid,--because the warrior instinct forbade him to fly. Had he been a policeman he would have staid, also--because he would have been asleep.
Mark Twain (The Complete Mark Twain Collection)
A man in Florence once had a heart attack when he saw the Birth of Venus, if you can believe it,” said a voice beside him. “Palpitations are more common, though. That’s what Stendhal had. Couldn’t walk, he reported, after seeing a particularly moving work of art. And Jung! Jung decided it was too dangerous to visit Pompeii in his old age because the feeling—the feeling of all that art and history round him, it might kill him. Jerusalem… Tourists in Jerusalem sometimes wrap themselves in hotel bedsheets. To become works of art themselves, you know? Part of history. A collective unconscious toga party. One lady in the holy city decided she was giving birth to God’s son. She wasn’t even pregnant, before you ask. Funny what art will do to you. Stendhal Syndrome, they call it, after our lad with the palpitations, though I prefer its more modern name: Declan Lynch.
Maggie Stiefvater (Mister Impossible (Dreamer Trilogy, #2))
There was hope for peace, but there will be no peace here. Not soon. There was hope for quiet, but there will be no quiet here. Not in this generation. The foundations of the home we founded are somewhat shaky, and repeating earthquakes rattle it. So what we really have in this land is an ongoing adventure. An odyssey. The Jewish state does not resemble any other nation. What this nation has to offer is not security or well-being or peace of mind. What it has to offer is the intensity of life on the edge. The adrenaline rush of living dangerously, living lustfully, living to the extreme. If a Vesuvius-like volcano were to erupt tonight and end our Pompeii, this is what it will petrify: a living people. People that have come from death and were surrounded by death but who nevertheless put up a spectacular spectacle of life. People who danced the dance of life to the very end.
Ari Shavit (My Promised Land: the triumph and tragedy of Israel)
In the Last Days religious seduction will be likewise paralleled with political seduction, and the Church will get double-crossed and betrayed. This is exactly what happened in Israel for placing trust in Pompeii and Alexander the Great. In the end they get an Antiochus Epiphanes, a Pontius Pilate, and a King Herod—all of whom typify and foreshadow the Antichrist. But the worst is yet to come for both Israel and, sadly, for much of the Church. The politicians whom Christians trust will betray them, and the clergy who urge and guide them in this direction will become capable of the most despicable acts imaginable
James Jacob Prasch (Shadows of the Beast)
I could hear the secrets of the universe being whispered to me . But then, just as dreams burn away with waking, the feeling faded. It was wrenched from my grasp, drifting into nothingness, like my lost city of Pompeii. Like my Rome. Like the man I had once been. The only magic I ever wanted, forever denied me .
Casey Lane (Venom and Vampires)
Con quale velocità, pensò l'ingegnere, la natura si riprende ciò che ha dovuto cedere: pioggia e gelo sbriciolano la muratura, le strade sono sepolte da strati verdi di erbaccia, gli acquedotti sono ostruiti dalla stessa acqua per portare la quale sono stati costruiti. Quella della civiltà è un'incessante guerra che l'uomo è destinato a perdere.
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
Think constantly how many doctors have died, after knitting their brows over their own patients how many astrologers, after predicting the deaths of others, as if death were something important; how many philosophers, after endless deliberation on death or immortality; how many heroes, after the many others they killed; how many tyrants, after using their power over men’s lives with monstrous insolence, as if they themselves were immortal. Think too how many whole cities have died – Helice, Pompeii, Herculaneum, innumerable others. Go over now all those you have known yourself, one after the other: one man follows a friend’s funeral and is then laid out himself, then another follows him – and all in a brief space of time. The conclusion of this? You should always look on human life as short and cheap. Yesterday sperm: tomorrow a mummy or ashes. So one should pass through this tiny fragment of time in tune with nature, and leave it gladly, as an olive might fall when ripe, blessing the earth which bore it and grateful to the tree which gave it growth.
Marcus Aurelius
C'etait un jour de fete. Mais l'haine se repete. Laissez pas la peur dominer le coeur, Si on veut que l'amour soit vainqueur
Ana Claudia Antunes (L'Amante de Victor Hugo (French Edition))
I’d seen a thousand lifetimes come and go, but had never truly lived.
Jacqueline Pawl (Defying Vesuvius (Saving Pompeii, #1))
The cliffs and mountains of this region were honeycombed with caves
Caroline Lawrence (The Pirates of Pompeii (Roman Mysteries, #3))
Whoever loves, let him flourish. Let him perish who knows not love. Let him perish twice over whoever forbids love.
Ancient graffiti at Pompeii
But beyond the extravagance of Rome's wealthiest citizens and flamboyant gourmands, a more restrained cuisine emerged for the masses: breads baked with emmer wheat; polenta made from ground barley; cheese, fresh and aged, made from the milk of cows and sheep; pork sausages and cured meats; vegetables grown in the fertile soil along the Tiber. In these staples, more than the spice-rubbed game and wine-soaked feasts of Apicius and his ilk, we see the earliest signs of Italian cuisine taking shape. The pillars of Italian cuisine, like the pillars of the Pantheon, are indeed old and sturdy. The arrival of pasta to Italy is a subject of deep, rancorous debate, but despite the legend that Marco Polo returned from his trip to Asia with ramen noodles in his satchel, historians believe that pasta has been eaten on the Italian peninsula since at least the Etruscan time. Pizza as we know it didn't hit the streets of Naples until the seventeenth century, when Old World tomato and, eventually, cheese, but the foundations were forged in the fires of Pompeii, where archaeologists have discovered 2,000-year-old ovens of the same size and shape as the modern wood-burning oven. Sheep's- and cow's-milk cheeses sold in the daily markets of ancient Rome were crude precursors of pecorino and Parmesan, cheeses that literally and figuratively hold vast swaths of Italian cuisine together. Olives and wine were fundamental for rich and poor alike.
Matt Goulding (Pasta, Pane, Vino: Deep Travels Through Italy's Food Culture (Roads & Kingdoms Presents))
When I’m with you, it’s like I’ve been seeing black-and-white and you’re the only spot of color; like I’m drowning and falling and gasping for breath all at once, and I feel so unbelievably happy.
Jacqueline Pawl (Defying Vesuvius (Saving Pompeii, #1))
Look at any picture of Priapus from antiquity, and you will see why he might have had trouble focusing on anything beyond his own anatomy. One fresco in Pompeii shows him fully occupied with the task of weighing his gigantic erection on scales. 25 He raises his filthy hopes, Ovid continues, and tries to sneak up on her, heart racing, on tiptoe (I find myself wondering how he doesn’t tip up,
Natalie Haynes (Divine Might: Goddesses in Greek Myth)
Turning back to Salta, he reappeared at the hospital and was asked by the staff what he had seen on his journey. “In truth, what do I see?” he reflected. “At least I am not nourished in the same ways as the tourists, and I find it strange to find, on the tourist brochures of Jujuy, for example, the Altar of the Fatherland, the cathedral where the national ensign was blessed, the jewel of the pulpit and the miraculous little virgin of Río Blanco and Pompeii. ... No, one doesn’t come to know a country or find an interpretation of life in this way. That is a luxurious façade, while its true soul is reflected in the sick of the hospitals, the detainees in the police stations or the anxious passersby one gets to know, as the Río Grande shows the turbulence of its swollen level from underneath.
Jon Lee Anderson (Che Guevara: A Revolutionary Life (Revised Edition))
But perhaps the most poetical thing Pompeii has yielded to modern research, was that grand figure of a Roman solider, clad in complete armour; who, true to his duty, true to his proud name of a soldier of Rome, and full of the stern courage which had given to that name its glory, stood to his post by the city gate, erect and unflinching, till the hell that raged around him burned out the dauntless spirit it could not conquer.
Mark Twain (The Innocents Abroad, Or, the New Pilgrims' Progress)
Nature has granted man no better gift than the shortness of life. The senses grow dull, the limbs are numb, sight, bearing, gait, even the teeth and alimentary organs die before we do, and yet this period is reckoned a portion of life." - Pg. 82
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
Think continually how many physicians are dead after often contracting their eyebrows over the sick; and how many astrologers after predicting with great pretensions the deaths of others; and how many philosophers after endless discourses on death or immortality; how many heroes after killing thousands; and how many tyrants who have used their power over men’s lives with terrible insolence as if they were immortal; and how many cities are entirely dead, so to speak, Helice and Pompeii and Herculaneum, and others innumerable. Add
Marcus Aurelius (Meditations)
Think continually how many physicians have died, after often knitting their foreheads over their patients; how many astrologers after prophesying other men's deaths, as though to die were a great matter; how many philosophers after endless debate on death or survival after death; how many paladins after slaying their thousands; how many tyrants after using their power over men's lives with monstrous arrogance, as if themselves immortal; how many entire cities have, if I may use the term, died, Helice, Pompeii, Herculaneum, and others innumerable. Run over, too, the many also you know of, one after another. One followed this man's funeral and then was himself laid on the bier; another followed him, and all in a little while. This is the whole matter: see always how ephemeral and cheap are the things of man- yesterday, a spot of albumen, tomorrow, ashes or a mummy. Therefore make your passage through this span of time in obedience to Nature and gladly lay down your life, as an olive, when ripe, might fall, blessing her who bare it and grateful to thee which gave it life.
Marcus Aurelius (Meditations)
and selfishness. We torture her at all hours by iron and wood, fire and stone. We dig her up and dump her in the sea. We sink mineshafts into her and drag out her entrails—and all for a jewel to wear on a pretty finger. Who can blame her if she occasionally quivers with anger?
Robert Harris (Pompeii)
then we would enter what he called his “study,” a room whose walls were hung with prints which showed, against a dark background, a pink and fleshy goddess driving a chariot, or standing upon a globe, or wearing a star on her brow—pictures which were popular under the Second Empire because there was thought to be something about them that suggested Pompeii, which were then generally despised, and which are now becoming fashionable again for one single and consistent reason (notwithstanding all the others that are advanced), namely, that they suggest the Second Empire.
Marcel Proust (Swann's Way)
Most Ballinacroagh natives, though, welcomed the dramatic change in climate, and the exuberant pronouncement of sunshine and flora that came with it. Unnamed buds appeared overnight along ivy-covered walls; plain cottages awoke to bursts of magenta, sienna, and lilac flowers that had been slumbering far too long under moss-ridden stones. The soggy grass of surrounding glens rippled with tones of gold, baking in the sun, while the sky over Ballinacroagh took on a shade of untouched blue that previously had been seen only in the cobalt of Pompeii murals. Not surprisingly, this unexpected homage to her Italian homeland gave Estelle Delmonico much reason to rejoice.
Marsha Mehran (Pomegranate Soup (Babylon Café #1))
A fair questioin. You've been to Naples. Imagine it five hundred years ago. Would it have made a difference?" "I've never been to Naples, Mr. Stone. But yeah, anywhere would have been totally different. It's not about Italy. It's about isolation and freedom and wanting more than you have." "True.True. But...I was so sure.Didn't you talk about Vesuvius when we read The Last Days of Pompeii?" "I think you might be confusing me with someone else." "No,no.I'm quite sure it was you. Wasn't it?" "No.It wasn't." "Oh,now,Ella. I distinctly remember something about the cleansing aspects of fire...Oh." "Wrong aspects, Mr. Stone." "Right,right. Of course. My mistake. Okay. No harm done. So,about islands...
Melissa Jensen (The Fine Art of Truth or Dare)
Ashes were already falling, not as yet very thickly. I looked round: a dense black cloud was coming up behind us, spreading over the earth like a flood. 'Let us leave the road while we can still see,'I said,'or we shall be knocked down and trampled underfoot in the dark by the crowd behind.' We had scarcely sat down to rest when darkness fell, not the dark of a moonless or cloudy night, but as if the lamp had been put out in a closed room. You could hear the shrieks of women, the wailing of infants, and the shouting of men; some were calling their parents, others their children or their wives, trying to recognize them by their voices. People bewailed their own fate or that of their relatives, and there were some who prayed for death in their terror of dying. Many besought the aid of the gods, but still more imagined there were no gods left, and that the universe was plunged into eternal darkness for evermore. ~Pliny the Younger Trust me…history will record the battle at the Puerto Rico Trench the same way. ~High Commander Mustafa
Pliny the Younger (The Letters of the Younger Pliny: Literally Translated (Classic Reprint))
It's a place I go to, even if nobody else can see that I've gone. I can smell it and certainly hear it, even if I can't always see it. That's the problem with all those well-meaning people who try to comfort you by telling you that everything's okay, you're home now, and the war's over, as if you're the idiot who can't read a newspaper and see that an armistice has been declared. It's like telling someone that Greece is over, or England, or Russia. It's nonsensical. Places aren't ever over, except maybe Pompeii. Still we pretend we believe it, all of us who sometimes fall over into that familiar place. Trying to explain that the war will never be over just makes you sound either mad or self-pitying, and makes your relatives look at you worriedly and pat your hand, and that's far more exhausting. You learn to just smooth over the conversation and get on with things. It doesn't even feel like a lie. As long as you don't hurt anybody and don't act too obviously strange, most people will let it go. The other ones like you understand. We all realized long ago that we're dual citizens now, that we come from two different places. Gallacia. And the war.
T. Kingfisher (What Feasts at Night (Sworn Soldier, #2))
There was, apparently, a nuclear reactor at a place called Indian Point, just thirty miles away in Westchester County. If something bad happened there, we were constantly being informed, the 'radioactive debris', whatever this might be, was liable to rain down on us. (Indian Point: the earliest, most incurable apprehensions stirred in its very name.) Then there was the question of dirty bombs. Apparently any fool could build a dirty bomb and explode it in Manhattan. How likely was this? Nobody knew. Very little about anything seemed intelligible or certain, and New York itself - that ideal source of the metropolitan diversion that serves as a response to the largest futilities - took on a fearsome, monstrous nature whose reality might have befuddled Plato himself. We were trying, as I irreverently analysed it, to avoid what might be termed a historic mistake. We were trying to understand, that is, whether we were in a pre-apocalyptic situation, like the European Jews in the thirties or the last citizens of Pompeii, or whether our situation was merely near-apocalyptic, like that of the Cold War inhabitants of New York, London, Washington and, for that matter, Moscow. In my anxiety I phoned Rachel's father, Charles Bolton, and asked him how he'd dealt with the threat of nuclear annihilation. I wanted to believe that this episode of history, like those old cataclysms that deposit a geologically telling layer of dust on the floors of seas, had sooted its survivors with special information.
Joseph O'Neill (Netherland)
We will always be black, you and I, even if it means different things in different places. France is built on its own dream, on its collection of bodies, and recall that your very name is drawn from a man who opposed France and its national project of theft by colonization. It is true that our color was not our distinguishing feature there, so much as the Americanness represented in our poor handle on French. And it is true that there is something particular about how the Americans who think they are white regard us—something sexual and obscene. We were not enslaved in France. We are not their particular “problem,” nor their national guilt. We are not their niggers. If there is any comfort in this, it is not the kind that I would encourage you to indulge. Remember your name. Remember that you and I are brothers, are the children of trans-Atlantic rape. Remember the broader consciousness that comes with that. Remember that this consciousness can never ultimately be racial; it must be cosmic. Remember the Roma you saw begging with their children in the street, and the venom with which they were addressed. Remember the Algerian cab driver, speaking openly of his hatred of Paris, then looking at your mother and me and insisting that we were all united under Africa. Remember the rumbling we all felt under the beauty of Paris, as though the city had been built in abeyance of Pompeii. Remember the feeling that the great public gardens, the long lunches, might all be undone by a physics, cousin to our rules and the reckoning of our own country, that we do not fully comprehend.
Ta-Nehisi Coates
I’ve been so mean to my body, outright hateful. I disparage her and call her names, I loathe parts of her and withhold care. I insist on physical standards she can never reach, for that is not how she is even made, but I detest her weakness for not pulling it off. I deny her things she loves depending on the current fad: bread, cheddar cheese, orange juice, baked potatoes. I push her too hard and refuse her enough rest. No matter what she accomplishes, I’m never happy with her. I’ve barely acknowledged her role in every precious experience of my life. I look at her with contempt. And yet every morning, no matter how terrible I have been to her, she gets us out of bed, nurtures the family, meets the needs of the day. She tells me when I am hungry or tired and sends special red-alert signals when I am overwhelmed or scared. She has safely gotten me to and from a thousand cities with fresh energy. She flushes with red wine, which she loves, which is pretty cute. She walked the Cliffs of Moher in Ireland, the red dirt of Uganda, the steep opulence of Santorini, the ruins of Pompeii. She senses danger, trouble, land mines; she is never wrong. Every single time, she tells me when not to say something. She has cooked ten thousand meals. She prays without being told to; sometimes I realize she is whispering to God for us. She walks and cooks and lifts and hugs and types and drives and cleans and holds babies and rests and laughs and does everything in her power to live another meaningful, connected day on this earth. She sure does love me and my life and family. Maybe it is time to stop hating her and just love her back.
Jen Hatmaker (Fierce, Free, and Full of Fire: The Guide to Being Glorious You)
For the better part of two years Niels Lyhne wandered abroad. He was so lonely. He had no family, no friend who was dear to his heart. But there was a greater loneliness about him than that; for a person may well feel anguished and forsaken if on the whole enormous earth there is not one small place he can bless and wish well, someplace he can turn his heart toward when his heart insists on swelling, a place he can long for when longing insists on spreading its wings; but if he has the clear, steady star of a life’s goal shining overhead, then there is no night so lonely that he is entirely alone. But Niels Lyhne had no star. He didn’t know what to do with himself and his abilities. He did have talent, but he just couldn’t use it; he went around feeling like a painter without hands. How he envied the others, great and small, who, no matter where they reached in life, always found something to hold on to! Because he could not find anything to hold on to. It seemed to him that all he could do was sing the old romantic songs over again, and everything that he had accomplished had been nothing more than this. It was as if his talent were something remote in him, a quiet Pompeii, or like a harp he could take out of a corner. It was not omnipresent, it did not run down the street with him, it did not reside in his eyes, it did not tingle in his fingertips, not at all; his talent did not have a hold on him. At times it seemed to him that he had been born half a century too late, at other times that he had arrived much too early. The talent within him was rooted in something from the past which was the only thing that could give it life. It could not draw nourishment from his opinions, his convictions, his sympathies, it could not assimilate them and give them form; they floated away from each other, these two parts, like water and oil, they could be shaken together but could not be mixed, never become one.
Jens Peter Jacobsen (Niels Lyhne)
The immorality of those families whose children are burnt alive on motor ways. They have money heaped on them by social welfare institutions and they go and spend it on consumer goods, which the right-thinking regard as sordid. But they have never had to see their kids die before they could buy a car and, hence, have never felt the need to send them off for inexpensive holidays on those coaches which, as if by chance, always have fatal accidents. The immorality of those who eat their children in hard cash merely corre sponds to the immorality of the social institution which recompenses their death. Everything in this vicious circle is abject: chance, which kills the poorest children, social charity which turns their deaths into a source of income, the parents who benefit from it to enjoy a short spell of wealth and decent society which stigma tizes them, for rumour does not condemn them at all for their indiscreet behaviour but for not handling the money rationally by putting it in the bank, for example, but instead spending it unscrupulously, thus verifying that they were indeed the victims of a divine justice. The whole of the social is there in its logical abjection. It is the poor who die and it is they who deserved to. It is this mediocre truth, this mediocre fatality which we know as 'the social'. Which amounts to saying that it only exists for its victims. Wretched in its essence, it only affects the wretched. It is itself a disinherited concept and it can only serve to render destitution complete. Nietzsche is right: the social is a concept, a value made by slaves for their own use, beneath the scornful gaze of their masters who have never believed in it. This can be clearly seen in all the so-called social reforms which inescapably turn against the intended beneficiaries. The reforms strike those whom they should save. This is not a perverse effect. Nature herself conforms to this willingly and catastrophes have a preference for the poor. Has a catastrophe ever been seen which directly strikes the rich - apart perhaps from the burial of Pompeii and the sinking of the Titanic ?
Jean Baudrillard (Cool Memories)
Touch can have two meanings: it can be an intimate gesture between equals, a way of saying: I care for you. But between people who are unequal, there’s an asymmetry: the powerful may touch the weak — a pat on the back, for example; but the weak may not lay hands on the powerful. His touch probably meant nothing. Any touch I might receive from a family member would be difficult to interpret. It could be a gesture of affection, a bit of condescension, or worst of all, a sexual overture. Or perhaps it might be a confusing mixture of all of these.
Rebecca East (A.D. 62: Pompeii)
A loaf of bread cost a quarter of a sesterce. So did a glass of wine.2 We know from graffiti at Pompeii that a prostitute, perhaps not a very elegant one, charged half a sesterce for her services. Entrance to the public baths was just twice that. Roman soldiers earned 1,200 sesterces a year and although there were some perks, they had to buy their own equipment. A casual labourer earned perhaps 2-3 sesterces a day – when he got work. A charity scheme to support poor children, presumably at a fairly basic level, paid between 10 and 12 sesterces a month. A lecturer in rhetoric under Vespasian received 100,000 sesterces a year and this was considered remarkable. It was a similar amount to the purchase price of a first-rate, intelligent slave in the second century, when lessening warfare had reduced the market. One foot of road cost 22 sesterces to lay and a large and elaborate tomb anything from 100,000 to half a million sesterces.
Elizabeth Speller (Following Hadrian: A Second-Century Journey through the Roman Empire)
Even in the dead of night, fluorescent lights in the hard seat compartment never shut off. It’s a policy with a purpose — total darkness in a packed car would be an invitation to mayhem — but the unceasing illumination presents passengers waking at 4 a.m. with a Pompeii-esque tableau: hundreds of men, women and children slumped unconscious across the booths, sinks and stairwells.
appears this way in graffiti from the city of Pompeii, which was preserved to an extraordinary degree when Mt. Vesuvius erupted in AD 79. “Corus licks cunt” (Corus cunnum lingit) and “Jucundus licks the cunt of Rustica” (Iucundus cunum lingit Rusticae), for example, appear on Pompeian apartment buildings.
Melissa Mohr (Holy Sh*t: A Brief History of Swearing)
it was at Pompeii, nonetheless, that archaeology was born. It was to come of age in Egypt. Once
Elizabeth Payne (The Pharaohs of Ancient Egypt)
In fact, a marriage was normally contracted, as the Romans put it, ‘by practice’: that is, in our terms, ‘by cohabitation’. If you lived together for a year, you were married. It
Mary Beard (The Fires of Vesuvius: Pompeii Lost and Found)
The floor of the passageway was lined with an intricate mosaic of a big, black hound. Underneath were written the words of warning that had served property owners for at least two thousand years. Cave canem. Beware of the dog.
Daniel Godfrey (New Pompeii (New Pompeii #1))
Curiously we did it all over again when we made the Live At Pompeii film, this time using another dog, called Mademoiselle Nobs. On the positive side, even when hard pressed, at least we resisted the temptation to construct an entire album of barking dogs, and to audition a clutch of session dogs desperate to make it in the music business.
Nick Mason (Inside Out: A Personal History of Pink Floyd)
Myself acquainted with misfortune, I learn to help the unfortunate.
Robert Colton (Pompeii: A Conspiracy Among Friends)
Lonely Planet (Lonely Planet Naples, Pompeii & the Amalfi Coast (Travel Guide))