Tuesday 19 January 2010

The sewer exit at the Porta Marina

Dear all:

I'm hoping to enlist the help of the Blogging Pompeii community to assist me in placing an image published by the Eschebach's in 1995 (left). The image is of the exit of a sewer through the southern city wall. I believe this is the same sewer discussed by Cozzi and Solgiano (1900) in the Forum and found by P. Arthur (1986) in 1980's beneath the via Marina. My best guess is that this image shows the area just to the northwest of the Porta Marina's pedestrian entrance, with the end of the Suburban baths' eastern colonade / arcade being slightly out of the frame to the left (red circles in map).

Can anyone confirm or refute this? Facts, opinions, and wild speculation alike are appreciated.



Sera Baker said...

Hi Eric,

A very interesting post. To hand I don't have a lot of material, but a quick look at the photograph you posted when compared with my photographic archive has left the impression in my mind that this is the drain that appears to have exited very close to the streetbench installed against the city wall to the east and to the north the Suburban Baths. Is this correct? The road west of this point appears as though it might have been disturbed (exploration of the sewer/drain. I wondered if you've considered looking at the pictures of the damage caused by the WW2 bombing and the subsequent reconstruction - perhaps the was modified at this time? If you would like some scans of photos from this period, let me know. But then again, these comments are based on a quick analysis of the few pictures I have (sadly none are relatively close up). Looking forward to more discussion.

Good luck

Sera Baker said...

I suspect that you're already aware of this, but some photos of the Porta Marina complete with surrounding area both before and after the reconstruction necessitated by the WWII bombing can be found in Danni di Guerra a Pompei by L Garcia y Garcia (see pgs. 168-171).

Eric Poehler said...

Thanks Sera!

Jackie and Bob at pompeiiinpictures said...

Hi Eric

Two possibilities (or is it wild speculation?) spring to mind;

1. Have a look at http://pompeiiinpictures.com/pompeiiinpictures/R8/8%2001%20a%20p2.htm (pictures 8, 9, 10). There is a triangular area below the Imperial Villa with what looks like a drain.

2. Have a look at http://pompeiiinpictures.com/pompeiiinpictures/R7/7%2016%2017.htm (Second and third pictures). This is a drain from the street between VII.16.16 and 17 and is on the city wall side with a long drop outside. It is probably the picture of the other side of the wall that you need but unfortunately we do not have one on the web site.

We are unfortunately away from home where all our high resolution and unused photographs are.

When we get home on Thursday (28/1)we will have a closer look at the higher resolution copies and see if we can come up with more when we enlarge them.

From memory we think we may also have some unused photos of the Porta Marina which we can inspect more closely.

Will let you know what we come up with.

Best wishes
Jackie and Bob

Jackie and Bob at pompeiiinpictures said...

Our pictures did not turn up anything unfortunately.

We did find that Lawrence Richardson Jnr (Pompeii: An Architectural History p.62) states "....the sewer under the Via Marina then passing south between the Basilica and the Aedes Veneris where it can be seen at present".

The plan on p. 52 would seem to take the sewer down the unnamed vicolo passing the bottom of Via Championnet. See http://pompeiiinpictures.com/pompeiiinpictures/Streets/streets%20132.htm (one of our streets pages that are not yet public).

If you are still interested and have not made any further progress let us know and we will try to have look at the Porta Marina and to the south of the Temple of Venus (armed with a copy of your photo). We will be there in April. Hope you and the family are well.

Best wishes
Jackie and Bob.

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