Ancient Rome's fascination with lovemaking celebrated with exhibition

Ancient Rome’s fascination with nudity and lovemaking will be celebrated with an exhibition revealing how ‘eroticism was everywherearound Pompeii ‘thanks to Greek influence

  • A new exhibition in Pompeii will celebrate the city’s history with eroticism
  • Frescos featuring big penises and sex position wall art will be on show
  • The exhibition at Pompeii Archaeological Park is starting on April 14
  • A new exhibition will celebrate Roman art’s obsession with sex in the ill-fated city of Pompeii.

    The works will be shown at the Pompeii Archaeological Park starting on April 14.

    The eroticism in the works will pay homage to the discovery of a mosaic depicting Priapus, the fertility god, weighing his penis on a scale which allowed discoverers to unearth Pompeii’s ruins in the 1900s.

    An erotic fresco found at Pompeii, dating from approximately the 1st century A.D. and preserved at the National Archaeological Museum of Naples

    An erotic fresco found at Pompeii, dating from approximately the 1st century A.D. and preserved at the National Archaeological Museum of Naples

    A fresco portraying Ares and Aphrodite from Casa di Marte e Venere (House of Mars and Venus) in Pompeii

    A fresco portraying Ares and Aphrodite from Casa di Marte e Venere (House of Mars and Venus) in Pompeii

    A fresco with an erotic subject depicting a Dionysian scene, from Pompeii

    A fresco with an erotic subject depicting a Dionysian scene, from Pompeii

    The city had been buried by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in AD79.

    Gabriel Zuchtriegel, the site director, vertel die tye: ‘Eroticism was everywhere, in houses, baths and public spaces thanks to the influence of the Greeks, whose art heavily featured nudity.

    The images of phalluses were thought to bring wealth and fertility to families in the city.

    Pompeiian fresco showing a satyr and a maenad embracing from the House of Cecilio Giocondo, Italië

    Pompeiian fresco showing a satyr and a maenad embracing from the House of Cecilio Giocondo, Italië

    Exhibits will include a chariot decorated with metal medallions of satyrs, nymphs and cupids, wall panels depicted various sex positions and a fresco from a villa of a similar scene.

    When the King of Naples visited Pompeii, he ordered the phalluses to be covered.

    He then made a decree that they could only be viewed by mature individuals in an act of prudishness.