Archaeology museum

Archaeology museum

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Called the Toro Farnese.  It is 13 feet, and the tallest ancient marble group ever found, and the largest intact statue from antiquity.  It was carved out of one piece of marble.  Michelangelo and others were asked to restore this group.

Called the Toro Farnese. It is 13 feet, and the tallest ancient marble group ever found, and the largest intact statue from antiquity. It was carved out of one piece of marble. Michelangelo and others were asked to restore this group.

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Hercules - front

Hercules – front

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Hercules - back

Hercules – back

Mosaics from Pompeii

Mosaics from Pompeii

mosaics

mosaics

More mosaics

More mosaics

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Dancing Faun - Greek bronze 20-inch high statue from fourth century B.C.

Dancing Faun – Greek bronze 20-inch high statue from fourth century B.C.

second-century B.C. floor mosaic that was completely intact when found.  The damage occurred as this treasure was removed from Popeii

second-century B.C. floor mosaic that was completely intact when found. The damage occurred as this treasure was removed from Popeii

Close-up of the floor mosaic

Close-up of the floor mosaic

more close-ups

more close-ups

frescoes taken from the walls at Pompeii

frescoes taken from the walls at Pompeii

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Naples city streets

Naples city streets

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There is a Dante Piazza in every city!

There is a Dante Piazza in every city!

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Laundry day

Laundry day

Galleria shopping mall

Galleria shopping mall

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Teatro di San Carlo - built in 1737, this is Europe's oldest opera house.

Teatro di San Carlo – built in 1737, this is Europe’s oldest opera house.

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The best pizza

The best pizza

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Packed in the train with the unwashed masses

Packed in the train with the unwashed masses

One of the things Bruce and I are very proud of is the way we have been able to get around with Italy’s public transportation.  Sorrento is about an hour south of Naples so when we took the fast train from Florence to Naples, we then had to transfer over to the Circumvesuviana train to get us down to Sorrento.  This train is the commuter train that links Naples, Herculaneum, Pompeii, and Sorrento with 30 or more stops along the way.  So today we woke up to sunshine and decided to take this train back up to Naples.  Well, the train ride is as enjoyable as anything else.  There are many things to look at – including people.  Very entertaining.  We have heard a lot about the crime and dirt of Naples (it is the Detroit of Italy) so we went with special attention to our surroundings and held my purse close.  Naples was a thriving Greek commercial center 2, 500 years ago.  Today, it remains southern Italy’s leading city with more than one million people.  The pulse of Italy throbs in Naples.  It is appallingly dirty and captivating at the same time.  From the Circumvesuviana train we went to their Metro (subway) and got ourselves to the Archaeological Museum.  This museum houses all the excavated fine arts and artifacts from Pompeii and Herculaneum.  It is hard to believe that all these artifacts were buried under volcanic ash since August 24, A.D. 79.  From the museum we did a walking self-tour of the city – walking down the main shopping street to the Royal Palace, Opera Theater, sea-side marina, then back up through the downtown and back to the train station.  It was an interesting city , but pretty dirty with a lot of homeless and pan-handlers.  We met a young couple at lunch the other day from Naples and she said that there is a lot of political corruption and that the city just does not take care of it’s history and art – or anything else for that matter.  It was pretty obvious that this is the case as you walk around.  While we were down at the marina we stopped for lunch and had the best pizza – in this city that invented it!  So far, the food in southern Italy is better than northern.

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