Pompeii study named one of the year’s top history books
The Sunday Times has named a book by Swansea University’s Dr Joanne Berry as one of the top eight history books of 2007.
Dr Berry, whose study The Complete Pompeii was published by Thames and Hudson in October, is a tutor in the Department of Classics, Ancient History and Egyptology in the University’s School of Humanities.
The book provides an authoritative but accessible study of one of the best known and most important archaeological sites in the world.
The sudden, dramatic destruction of Pompeii following the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD has captured the public’s imagination for nearly two thousand years. Even today, the town’s houses and other buildings present a vivid picture of life, disaster and death in a Roman town.
Dr Berry’s book explores the changing nature of excavation and research since Pompeii was unearthed, and takes a look at a range of everyday issues that would have affected the lives of the town’s inhabitants, from politics and religion, through to the economy, food and long distance trade.
The Complete Pompeii also contains many lavish illustrations, covering the town’s architecture, mosaics, houses, and shops, as well as some of the graffiti discovered in the town.
Writing in the Sunday Times on December 2, Andrew Holgate said the “This book’s strengths are its accessibility and up-to-dateness. Hundreds of volumes have been written about Pompeii and Herculaneum, but few have offered such a thorough overview, and even fewer can boast such fresh information. (…) Beautifully illustrated, it is an ideal introduction to one of the world’s great classical sites.”
Dr Berry said: “I am delighted that my book was chosen as one of the year’s best history books. It came as a complete surprise to me, but I can’t imagine a better Christmas present! I hope that it will encourage more people to appreciate why the history of Pompeii is such a fascinating story.”
Further information about The Complete Pompeii, published by Thames and Hudson, is available here.
You may also wish to read the Sunday Telegraph review of the The Complete Pompeii.
Further details of the Sunday Times history books of the year are available here.