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Title: Buried Cities, Complete - Pompeii, Olympia, Mycenae
Author: Hall, Jennie, 1875-1921
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Buried Cities, Complete - Pompeii, Olympia, Mycenae" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.




Author of "Four Old Greeks," Etc. Instructor in History and English in
the Francis W. Parker School, Chicago

With Many Drawings and Photographs From Original Sources

The publishers are grateful to the estate of Miss Jennie Hall and to her
many friends for assistance in planning the publication of this book.
Especial thanks are due to Miss Nell C. Curtis of the Lincoln School,
New York City, for helping to finish Miss Hall's work of choosing the
pictures, and to Miss Irene I. Cleaves of the Francis Parker School,
Chicago, who wrote the captions. It was Miss Katharine Taylor, now of
the Shady Hill School, Cambridge, who brought these stories to our


Do you like to dig for hidden treasure? Have you ever found Indian
arrowheads or Indian pottery? I knew a boy who was digging a cave in
a sandy place, and he found an Indian grave. With his own hands he
uncovered the bones and skull of some brave warrior. That brown skull
was more precious to him than a mint of money. Another boy I knew was
making a cave of his own. Suddenly he dug into an older one made years
before. He crawled into it with a leaping heart and began to explore. He
found an old carpet and a bit of burned candle. They proved that some
one had lived there. What kind of a man had he been and what kind
of life had he lived--black or white or red, robber or beggar or
adventurer? Some of us were walking in the woods one day when we saw a
bone sticking out of the ground. Luckily we had a spade, and we set to
work digging. Not one moment was the tool idle. First one bone and then
another came to light and among them a perfect horse's skull. We felt as
though we had rescued Captain Kidd's treasure, and we went home draped
in bones.

Suppose that instead of finding the bones of a horse we had uncovered a
gold-wrapped king. Suppose that instead of a deserted cave that boy
had dug into a whole buried city with theaters and mills and shops and
beautiful houses. Suppose that instead of picking up an Indian arrowhead
you could find old golden vases and crowns and bronze swords lying in
the earth. If you could be a digger and a finder and could choose your
find, would you choose a marble statue or a buried bakeshop with bread
two thousand years old still in the oven or a king's grave filled with
golden gifts? It is of such digging and such finding that this book




  1. The Greek Slave and the Little Roman Boy

  2. Vesuvius

  3. Pompeii Today

  _Pictures of Pompeii:_

  A Roman Boy

  The City of Naples

  Vesuvius in Eruption

  Pompeii from an Airplane

  Nola Street; the Stabian Gate

  In the Street of Tombs

  The Amphitheater; the Baths

  Temple of Apollo; School of the Gladiators

  The Smaller Theater

  A Sacrifice

  Scene in the Forum; Hairpins; Bath Appliances

  Peristyle of the House of the Vettii

  Lady Playing a Harp

  Kitchen of the House of the Vettii

  Kitchen Utensils; Centaur Cup

  The House of the Tragic Poet

  Mosaic of Watch Dog

  The House of Diomede

  A Bakery; Section of a Mill

  Lucius Cæcilius Jueundus

  Bronze Candleholder

  The Dancing Faun
  Hermes in Repose

  The Arch of Nero


  1. Two Winners of Crowns

  2. How a City Was Lost

  _Pictures of Olympia_:

  Entrance to Stadion


  Boys in Gymnasium

  Temple of Zeus

  The Labors of Herakles

  The Statue of Victory

  The Hermes of Praxiteles

  The Temple of Hera

  Head of an Athlete

  A Greek Horseman


  1. How a Lost City Was Found

  _Pictures of Mycenæ_:

  The Circle of Royal Tombs

  Doctor and Mrs. Schliemann at Work

  The Gate of Lions

  Inside the Treasury of Atreus

  The Interior of the Palace

  Gold Mask; Cow's Head

  The Warrior Vase

  Bronze Helmets; Gem

  Bronze Daggers

  Carved Ivory Head; Bronze Brooches

  A Cup from Vaphio

  Gold Plates; Gold Ornament

  Mycenæ in the Distance

[Illustration: Line Art of Bronze Lamp. Caption: _Bronze Lamps_. The
bowl held olive oil. A wick came out at the nozzle. These lamps gave a
dim and smoky light.]


Ariston, the Greek slave, was busily painting. He stood in a little room
with three smooth walls. The fourth side was open upon a court. A little
fountain splashed there. Above stretched the brilliant sky of Italy. The
August sun shone hotly down. It cut sharp shadows of the columns on the
cement floor. This was the master's room. The artist was painting the
walls. Two were already gay with pictures. They showed the mighty deeds
of warlike Herakles. Here was Herakles strangling the lion, Herakles
killing the hideous hydra, Herakles carrying the wild boar on his
shoulders, Herakles training the mad horses. But now the boy was
painting the best deed of all--Herakles saving Alcestis from death. He
had made the hero big and beautiful. The strong muscles lay smooth in
the great body. One hand trailed the club. On the other arm hung the
famous lion skin. With that hand the god led Alcestis. He turned his
head toward her and smiled. On the ground lay Death, bruised and
bleeding. One batlike black wing hung broken. He scowled after the hero
and the woman. In the sky above him stood Apollo, the lord of life,
looking down. But the picture of the god was only half finished. The
figure was sketched in outline. Ariston was rapidly laying on paint with
his little brushes. His eyes glowed with Apollo's own fire. His lips
were open, and his breath came through them pantingly.

"O god of beauty, god of Hellas, god of freedom, help me!" he half
whispered while his brush worked.

For he had a great plan in his mind. Here he was, a slave in this rich
Roman's house. Yet he was a free-born son of Athens, from a family of
painters. Pirates had brought him here to Pompeii, and had sold him as a
slave. His artist's skill had helped him, even in this cruel land. For
his master, Tetreius, loved beauty. The Roman had soon found that his
young Greek slave was a painter. He had said to his steward:

"Let this boy work at the mill no longer. He shall paint the walls of my
private room."

So he had talked to Ariston about what the pictures should be. The Greek
had found that this solemn, frowning Roman was really a kind man. Then
hope had sprung up in his breast and had sung of freedom.

"I will do my best to please him," he had thought. "When all the walls
are beautiful, perhaps he will smile at my work. Then I will clasp his
knees. I will tell him of my father, of Athens, of how I was stolen.
Perhaps he will send me home."

Now the painting was almost done. As he worked, a thousand pictures were
flashing through his mind. He saw his beloved old home in lovely Athens.
He felt his father's hand on his, teaching him to paint. He gazed again
at the Parthenon, more beautiful than a dream. Then he saw himself
playing on the fishing boat on that terrible holiday. He saw the pirate
ship sail swiftly from behind a rocky point and pounce upon them. He saw
himself and his friends dragged aboard. He felt the tight rope on his
wrists as they bound him and threw him under the deck. He saw himself
standing here in the market place of Pompeii. He heard himself sold for
a slave. At that thought he threw down his brush and groaned.

But soon he grew calmer. Perhaps the sweet drip of the fountain cooled
his hot thoughts. Perhaps the soft touch of the sun soothed his heart.
He took up his brushes again and set to work.

"The last figure shall be the most beautiful of all," he said to
himself. "It is my own god, Apollo."

So he worked tenderly on the face. With a few little strokes he made the
mouth smile kindly. He made the blue eyes deep and gentle. He lifted the
golden curls with a little breeze from Olympos. The god's smile cheered
him. The beautiful colors filled his mind. He forgot his sorrows. He
forgot everything but his picture. Minute by minute it grew under his
moving brush. He smiled into the god's eyes.

Meantime a great noise arose in the house. There were cries of fear.
There was running of feet.

"A great cloud!" "Earthquake!" "Fire and hail!" "Smoke from hell!" "The
end of the world!" "Run! Run!"

And men and women, all slaves, ran screaming through the house and out
of the front door. But the painter only half heard the cries. His ears,
his eyes, his thoughts were full of Apollo.

For a little the house was still. Only the fountain and the shadows and
the artist's brush moved there. Then came a great noise as though the
sky had split open. The low, sturdy house trembled. Ariston's brush was
shaken and blotted Apollo's eye. Then there was a clattering on the
cement floor as of a million arrows. Ariston ran into the court. From
the heavens showered a hail of gray, soft little pebbles like beans.
They burned his upturned face. They stung his bare arms. He gave a cry
and ran back under the porch roof. Then he heard a shrill call above all
the clattering. It came from the far end of the house. Ariston ran back
into the private court. There lay Caius, his master's little sick son.
His couch was under the open sky, and the gray hail was pelting down
upon him. He was covering his head with his arms and wailing.

"Little master!" called Ariston. "What is it? What has happened to us?"
"Oh, take me!" cried the little boy.

"Where are the others?" asked Ariston.

"They ran away," answered Caius. "They were afraid, Look! O-o-h!"

He pointed to the sky and screamed with terror.

Ariston looked. Behind the city lay a beautiful hill, green with trees.
But now from the flat top towered a huge, black cloud. It rose straight
like a pine tree and then spread its black branches over the heavens.
And from that cloud showered these hot, pelting pebbles of pumice stone.

"It is a volcano," cried Ariston.

He had seen one spouting fire as he had voyaged on the pirate ship.

"I want my father," wailed the little boy.

Then Ariston remembered that his master was away from home. He had gone
in a ship to Rome to get a great physician for his sick boy. He had left
Caius in the charge of his nurse, for the boy's mother was dead. But
now every slave had turned coward and had run away and left the little
master to die.

Ariston pulled the couch into one of the rooms. Here the roof kept off
the hail of stones.

"Your father is expected home to-day, master Caius," said the Greek. "He
will come. He never breaks his word. We will wait for him here. This
strange shower will soon be over."

So he sat on the edge of the couch, and the little Roman laid his head
in his slave's lap and sobbed. Ariston watched the falling pebbles. They
were light and full of little holes. Every now and then black rocks of
the size of his head whizzed through the air. Sometimes one fell into
the open cistern and the water hissed at its heat. The pebbles lay piled
a foot deep all over the courtyard floor. And still they fell thick and

"Will it never stop?" thought Ariston.

Several times the ground swayed under him. It felt like the moving of a
ship in a storm. Once there was thunder and a trembling of the house.
Ariston was looking at a little bronze statue that stood on a tall,
slender column. It tottered to and fro in the earthquake. Then it fell,
crashing into the piled-up stones. In a few minutes the falling shower
had covered it.

Ariston began to be more afraid. He thought of Death as he had painted
him in his picture. He imagined that he saw him hiding behind a column.
He thought he heard his cruel laugh. He tried to look up toward the
mountain, but the stones pelted him down. He felt terribly alone. Was
all the rest of the world dead? Or was every one else in some safe

"Come, Caius, we must get away," he cried. "We shall be buried here."

He snatched up one of the blankets from the couch. He threw the ends
over his shoulders and let a loop hang at his back. He stood the sick
boy in this and wound the ends around them both. Caius was tied to his
slave's back. His heavy little head hung on Ariston's shoulder. Then the
Greek tied a pillow over his own head. He snatched up a staff and ran
from the house. He looked at his picture as he passed. He thought he
saw Death half rise from the ground. But Apollo seemed to smile at his

At the front door Ariston stumbled. He found the street piled deep with
the gray, soft pebbles. He had to scramble up on his hands and knees.
From the house opposite ran a man. He looked wild with fear. He was
clutching a little statue of gold. Ariston called to him, "Which way to
the gate?"

But the man did not hear. He rushed madly on. Ariston followed him. It
cheered the boy a little to see that somebody else was still alive in
the world. But he had a hard task. He could not run. The soft pebbles
crunched under his feet and made him stumble. He leaned far forward
under his heavy burden. The falling shower scorched his bare arms and
legs. Once a heavy stone struck him on his cushioned head, and he fell.
But he was up in an instant. He looked around bewildered. His head was
ringing. The air was hot and choking. The sun was gone. The shower was
blinding. Whose house was this? The door stood open. The court was
empty. Where was the city gate? Would he never get out? He did not know
this street. Here on the corner was a wine shop with its open sides. But
no men stood there drinking. Wine cups were tipped over and broken on
the marble counter. Ariston stood in a daze and watched the wine
spilling into the street.

Then a crowd came rushing past him. It was evidently a family fleeing
for their lives. Their mouths were open as though they were crying. But
Ariston could not hear their voices. His ears shook with the roar of the
mountain. An old man was hugging a chest. Gold coins were spilling out
as he ran. Another man was dragging a fainting woman. A young girl ran
ahead of them with white face and streaming hair. Ariston stumbled on
after this company. A great black slave came swiftly around a corner and
ran into him and knocked him over, but fled on without looking back. As
the Greek boy fell forward, the rough little pebbles scoured his face.
He lay there moaning. Then he began to forget his troubles. His aching
body began to rest. He thought he would sleep. He saw Apollo smiling.
Then Caius struggled and cried out. He pulled at the blanket and tried
to free himself. This roused Ariston, and he sat up. He felt the hot
pebbles again. He heard the mountain roar. He dragged himself to his
feet and started on. Suddenly the street led him out into a broad space.
Ariston looked around him. All about stretched wide porches with their
columns. Temple roofs rose above them. Statues stood high on their
pedestals. He was in the forum. The great open square was crowded with
hurrying people. Under one of the porches Ariston saw the money changers
locking their boxes. From a wide doorway ran several men. They were
carrying great bundles of woolen cloth, richly embroidered and dyed
with precious purple. Down the great steps of Jupiter's temple ran a
priest. Under his arms he clutched two large platters of gold. Men were
running across the forum dragging bags behind them.

Every one seemed trying to save his most precious things. And every one
was hurrying to the gate at the far end. Then that was the way out!
Ariston picked up his heavy feet and ran. Suddenly the earth swayed
under him. He heard horrible thunder. He thought the mountain was
falling upon him. He looked behind. He saw the columns of the porch
tottering. A man was running out from one of the buildings. But as he
ran, the walls crashed down. The gallery above fell cracking. He was
buried. Ariston saw it all and cried out in horror. Then he prayed:

"O Lord Poseidon, shaker of the earth, save me! I am a Greek!"

Then he came out of the forum. A steep street sloped down to a gate. A
river of people was pouring out there. The air was full of cries. The
great noise of the crowd made itself heard even in the noise of the
volcano. The streets were full of lost treasures. Men pushed and fell
and were trodden upon. But at last Ariston passed through the gateway
and was out of the city. He looked about.

"It is no better," he sobbed to himself.

The air was thicker now. The shower had changed to hot dust as fine
as ashes. It blurred his eyes. It stopped his nostrils. It choked his
lungs. He tore his chiton from top to bottom and wrapped it about his
mouth and nose. He looked back at Caius and pulled the blanket over his
head. Behind him a huge cloud was reaching out long black arms from the
mountain to catch him. Ahead, the sun was only a red wafer in the shower
of ashes. Around him people were running off to hide under rocks or
trees or in the country houses. Some were running, running anywhere to
get away. Out of one courtyard dashed a chariot. The driver was lashing
his horses. He pushed them ahead through the crowd. He knocked people
over, but he did not stop to see what harm he had done. Curses flew
after him. He drove on down the road.

Ariston remembered when he himself had been dragged up here two years
ago from the pirate ship.

"This leads to the sea," he thought. "I will go there. Perhaps I shall
meet my master, Tetreius. He will come by ship. Surely I shall find him.
The gods will send him to me. O blessed gods!"

But what a sea! It roared and tossed and boiled. While Ariston looked,
a ship was picked up and crushed and swallowed. The sea poured up the
steep shore for hundreds of feet. Then it rushed back and left its
strange fish gasping on the dry land. Great rocks fell from the sky,
and steam rose up as they splashed into the water. The sun was growing
fainter. The black cloud was coming on. Soon it would be dark. And then
what? Ariston lay down where the last huge wave had cooled the ground.
"It is all over, Caius," he murmured. "I shall never see Athens again."

For a while there were no more earthquakes. The sea grew a little less
wild. Then the half-fainting Ariston heard shouts. He lifted his head.
A small boat had come ashore. The rowers had leaped out. They were
dragging it up out of reach of the waves.

"How strange!" thought Ariston. "They are not running away. They must be
brave. We are all cowards."

"Wait for me here!" cried a lordly voice to the rowers.

When he heard that voice Ariston struggled to his feet and called.

"Marcus Tetreius! Master!"

He saw the man turn and run toward him. Then the boy toppled over and
lay face down in the ashes.

When he came to himself he felt a great shower of water in his face. The
burden was gone from his back. He was lying in a row boat, and the boat
was falling to the bottom of the sea. Then it was flung up to the skies.
Tetreius was shouting orders. The rowers were streaming with sweat and
sea water.

In some way or other they all got up on the waiting ship. It always
seemed to Ariston as though a wave had thrown him there. Or had Poseidon
carried him? At any rate, the great oars of the galley were flying. He
could hear every rower groan as he pulled at his oar. The sails, too,
were spread. The master himself stood at the helm. His face was one
great frown. The boat was flung up and down like a ball. Then fell
darkness blacker than night.

"Who can steer without sun or stars?" thought the boy.

Then he remembered the look on his master's face as he stood at the
tiller. Such a look Ariston had painted on Herakles' face as he
strangled the lion.

"He will get us out," thought the slave.

For an hour the swift ship fought with the waves. The oarsmen were
rowing for their lives. The master's arm was strong, and his heart was
not for a minute afraid. The wind was helping. At last they reached calm

"Thanks be to the gods!" cried Tetreius. "We are out of that boiling

At his words fire shot out of the mountain. It glowed red in the dusty
air. It flung great red arms across the sky after the ship. Every man
and spar and oar on the vessel seemed burning in its light. Then the
fire died, and thick darkness swallowed everything. Ariston's heart
seemed smothered in his breast. He heard the slaves on the rowers'
benches scream with fear. Then he heard their leader crying to them. He
heard a whip whiz through the air and strike on bare shoulders. Then
there was a crash as though the mountain had clapped its hands. A
thicker shower of ashes filled the air. But the rowers were at their
oars again. The ship was flying.

So for two hours or more Tetreius and his men fought for safety. Then
they came out into fresher air and calmer water. Tetreius left the
rudder. "Let the men rest and thank the gods," he said to his overseer.
"We have come up out of the grave."

When Ariston heard that, he remembered the Death he had left painted
on his master's wall. By that time the picture was surely buried under
stones and ashes. The boy covered his face with his ragged chiton and
wept. He hardly knew what he was crying for--the slavery, the picture,
the buried city, the fear of that horrid night, the sorrows of the
people left back there, his father, his dear home in Athens. At last
he fell asleep. The night was horrible with dreams--fire, earthquake,
strangling ashes, cries, thunder, lightning. But his tired body held
him asleep for several hours. Finally he awoke. He was lying on a soft
mattress. A warm blanket covered him. Clean air filled his nostrils. The
gentle light of dawn lay upon his eyes. A strange face bent over him.

"It is only weariness," a kind voice was saying. "He needs food and rest
more than medicine."

Then Ariston saw Tetreius, also, bending over him. The slave leaped to
his feet. He was ashamed to be caught asleep in his master's presence.
He feared a frown for his laziness.

"My picture is finished, master," he cried, still half asleep.

"And so is your slavery," said Tetreius, and his eyes shone.

"It was not a slave who carried my son out of hell on his back. It was a
hero." He turned around and called, "Come hither, my friends."

Three Roman gentlemen stepped up. They looked kindly upon Ariston.

"This is the lad who saved my son," said Tetreius. "I call you to
witness that he is no longer a slave. Ariston, I send you from my hand a
free man."

He struck his hand lightly on the Greek's shoulder, as all Roman masters
did when they freed a slave. Ariston cried aloud with joy. He sank to
his knees weeping. But Tetreius went on.

"This kind physician says that Caius will live. But he needs good air
and good nursing. He must go to some one of Aesculapius' holy places. He
shall sleep in the temple and sit in the shady porches, and walk in the
sacred groves. The wise priests will give him medicines. The god will
send healing dreams. Do you know of any such place, Ariston?"

The Greek thought of the temple and garden of Aesculapius on the sunny
side of the Acropolis at home in Athens. But he could not speak. He
gazed hungrily into Tetreius' eyes. The Roman smiled.

"Ariston, this ship is bound for Athens! All my life I have loved
her--her statues, her poems, her great deeds. I have wished that my son
might learn from her wise men. The volcano has buried my home, Ariston.
But my wealth and my friends and my son are aboard this ship. What do
you say, my friend? Will you be our guide in Athens?" Ariston leaped up
from his knees. A fire of joy burned in his eyes. He stretched his hands
to the sky.

"O blessed Herakles," he cried, "again thou hast conquered Death. Thou
didst snatch us from the grave of Pompeii. Give health to this Roman
boy. O fairest Athena, shed new beauty upon our violet crowned Athens.
For there is coming to visit her the best of men, my master Tetreius."

[Illustration: _A Marble Table_: The lions' heads were painted yellow.
You can see a table much like this in the garden pictured later.]


So a living city was buried in a few hours. Wooded hills and green
fields lay covered under great ash heaps. Ever since that terrible
eruption Vesuvius has been restless. Sometimes she has been quiet for
a hundred years or more and men have almost forgotten that she ever
thundered and spouted and buried cities. But all at once she would move
again. She would shoot steam and ashes into the sky. At night fire
would leap out of her top. A few times she sent out dust and lava and
destroyed houses and fields. A man who lived five hundred years after
Pompeii was destroyed described Vesuvius as she was in his time. He

"This mountain is steep and thick with woods below. Above, it is very
craggy and wild. At the top is a deep cave. It seems to reach the bottom
of the mountain. If you peep in you can see fire. But this ordinarily
keeps in and does not trouble the people. But sometimes the mountain
bellows like an ox. Soon after it casts out huge masses of cinders. If
these catch a man, he hath no way to save his life. If they fall upon
houses, the roofs are crushed by the weight. If the wind blow stiff,
the ashes rise out of sight and are carried to far countries. But this
bellowing comes only every hundred years or thereabout. And the air
around the mountain is pure. None is more healthy. Physicians send
thither sick men to get well."

The ashes that had covered Pompeii changed to rich soil. Green vines
and shrubs and trees sprang up and covered it, and flowers made it gay.
Therefore people said to themselves:

"After all, she is a good old mountain. There will never be another
eruption while we are alive."

So villages grew up around her feet. Farmers came and built little
houses and planted crops and were happy working the fertile soil. They
did not dream that they were living above a buried city, that the roots
of their vines sucked water from an old Roman house, that buried statues
lay gazing up toward them as they worked.

About three hundred years ago came another terrible eruption. Again
there were earthquakes. Again the mountain bellowed. Again black clouds
turned day into night. Lightning flashed from cloud to cloud. Tempests
of hot rain fell. The sea rushed back and forth on the shore. The whole
top of the mountain was blown out or sank into the melting pot. Seven
rivers of red-hot lava poured down the slopes. They flowed for five
miles and fell into the sea. On the way they set fire to forests and
covered five little villages. Thousands of people were killed.

Since that time Vesuvius has been very active. Almost every year there
have been eruptions with thunder and earthquakes and showers and lava.
A few of these have done much damage. [Footnote: In this year, 1922,
Vesuvius has been very active for the first time since 1906. It has been
causing considerable alarm in Naples. A new cone, 230 feet high, has
developed.--Ed.] And even on her calmest days a cloud has always hung
above the mountain top. Sometimes it has been thin and white--a cloud of
steam. Sometimes it has been black and curling--a cloud of dust.

Vesuvius is a dangerous thing, but very beautiful. It stands tall and
pointed and graceful against a lovely sky. Its little cloud waves from
it like a plume. At night the mountain is swallowed by the dark. But
the red rivers down its slopes glare in the sky. It is beautiful and
terrible like a tiger. Thousands of people have loved it. They have
climbed it and looked down its crater. It is like looking into the heart
of the earth. One of these travelers wrote of his visit in 1793. He

"For many days Vesuvius has been in action. I have watched it from
Naples. It is wonderfully beautiful and always changing. On one day huge
clouds poured out of the top. They hung in the sky far above, white as
snow. Suddenly a cloud of smoke rushed out of another mouth. It was as
black as ink. The black column rose tall and curling beside the snowy
clouds. That was a picture in black and white. But at another time I saw
one in bright colors.

"On a certain night there were towers and curls and waves and spires of
flames leaping from the top of the mountain. Millions of red-hot stones
were shot into the sky. They sailed upward for hundreds of feet, then
curved and fell like skyrockets. I looked through my telescope and saw
liquid lava boiling and bubbling over the crater's edge. I could see it
splash upon the rocks and glide slowly down the sides of the cone. The
whole top of the mountain was red with melted rock. And above it waved
the changing flames of red, orange, yellow, blue.

"On another night, as I was getting into bed, I felt an earthquake. I
looked out of my window toward Vesuvius. All the top was glowing with
red-hot matter. A terrible roaring came from the mountain. In an instant
fire shot high into the air. The red column curved and showered the
whole cone. In half a minute came another earthquake shock. My doors and
windows rattled. Things were shaken from my table to the floor. Then
came the thunder of an explosion from the mountain and another shower
of fire. After a few seconds there were noises like the trampling of
horses' hoofs. It was, of course, the noise of the shot-out stones
falling upon the rocks of the mountainsides eight miles away.

"I decided to ascend the volcano and see the crater from which all these
interesting things came. A few friends went with me. For most of the way
we traveled on horses. After two or three hours we reached the bottom of
the cone of rocks and ashes. From there we had to go on foot. We went
over to the river of red-hot lava. We planned to walk up along its edge.
But the hot rock was smoking, and the wind blew the smoke into our
faces. A thick mist of fine ashes from the crater almost suffocated us.
Sulphur fumes blew toward us and choked us. I said,

"'We must cross the stream of lava. On the other side the wind will not
trouble us.'

"'Cross that melted rock?' my friends cried out. 'We should sink into it
and be burned alive.'

"But as we stood talking great stones were thrown out of the volcano.
They rolled down the mountainside close to us. If they had struck us
it would have been death. There was only one way to save ourselves. I
covered my face with my hat and rushed across the stream of lava. The
melted rock was so thick and heavy that I did not sink in. I only burned
my boots and scorched my hands. My friends followed me. On that side we
were safe. We climbed for half an hour. Then we came to the head of our
red river. It did not flow over the edge of the crater. Many feet down
from the top it had torn a hole through the cone. I shall never forget
the sight as long as I live. There was a vast arch in the black rock.
From this arch rushed a clear torrent of lava. It flowed smoothly like
honey. It glowed with all the splendor of the sun. It looked thin like
golden water.

"'I could stir it with a stick,' said one of my friends.

"'I doubt it,' I said. 'See how slowly it flows. It must be very thick
and heavy.'

"To test it we threw pebbles into it. They did not sink, but floated on
like corks. We rolled in heavier stones of seventy or eighty pounds.
They only made shallow dents in the stream and floated down with the
current. A great rock of three hundred pounds lay near. I raised it upon
end and let it fall into the lava. Very slowly it sank and disappeared.

"As the stream flowed on it spread out wider over the mountain. Farther
down the slope it grew darker and harder. It started from the arch like
melted gold. Then it changed to orange, to bright red, to dark red, to
brown, as it cooled. At the lower end it was black and hard and broken
like cinders.

"We climbed a little higher above the arch. There was a kind of chimney
in the rock. Smoke and stream were coming out of it. I went close. The
fumes of sulphur choked me. I reached out and picked some lumps of pure
sulphur from the edge of the rock. For one moment the smoke ceased. I
held my breath and looked down the hole. I saw the glare of red-hot lava
flowing beneath. The mountain was a pot, full of boiling rock."

Another man writes of a visit in 1868, a quieter year.

"At first we climbed gentle slopes through vineyards and fields and
villages. Sometimes we came suddenly upon a black line in a green
meadow. A few years before it had flowed down red-hot. Further up we
reached large stretches of rock. Here wild vines and lupines were
growing in patches where the lava had decayed into soil. Then came
bare slopes with dark hollow and sharp ridges. We walked on old stiff
lava-streams. Sometimes we had to plod through piles of coarse, porous
cinders. Sometimes we climbed over tangled, lumpy beds of twisted, shiny
rock. Sometimes we looked into dark arched tunnels. Red streams had
once flowed out of them. A few times we passed near fresh cracks in the
mountain. Here steam puffed out.

"At last we reached a broad, hot piece of ground. Here were smoking
holes. The night before I had looked at them with a telescope from the
foot of the mountain. I had seen red rivers flowing from them. Now they
were empty. Last night's lava lay on the slope, cooled and black. I
was standing on it. My feet grew hot. I had to keep moving. The air I
breathed was warm and smelled like that of an iron foundry. I pushed my
pole into a crack in the rock. The wood caught fire. I was standing on a
thin crust. What was below? I broke out a piece of the hard lava. A red
spot glared up at me. Under the crust red-hot lava was still flowing. I
knew that it would be several years before it would be perfectly cool."

So for three centuries people have watched Vesuvius at work. But she is
much older than that--thousands of years older--older than any city or
country or people in the world. In all that time she has poured out
millions of tons of matter--lava, huge glassy boulders, little pebbles
of pumice stone, long shining hairs, fine dust or ashes. All these
things are different forms of melted rock. Sometimes the steam blows the
liquid into fine dust; sometimes it breaks it into little pieces and
fills them with bubbles. At another time the steam is not so strong and
only pushes the stuff out gently over the crater's edge. Many different
minerals are found in these rocks--iron, copper, lead, mica, zinc,
sulphur. Some pieces are beautiful in color--blue, green, red, yellow.
Precious stones have sometimes been found--garnets, topaz, quartz,
tourmaline, lapis lazuli. But most of the stone is dull black or brown
or gray.

All this heavy matter drops close to the mountain. And on calm days the
ashes, also, fall near at home. Indeed, the volcano has built up its own
mountain. But a heavy wind often carries the fine dust for hundreds of
miles. Once it was blown as far as Constantinople and it darkened the
sun and frightened people there. Some of the ashes fall into the sea.
For years the currents carry them about from shore to shore. At last
they settle to the bottom and make clay or sand or mud. The material
lies there for thousands of years and is hard packed into a soft fine
grained rock, called tufa. The city of Naples to-day is built of such
stone that once lay under the sea. An earthquake long ago lifted the
ocean bottom and turned it into dry land. Now men live upon it and cut
streets in it and grow crops on it.

So for many miles about, Vesuvius has been making earth. Her ashes lie
hundreds of feet deep. Men dig wells and still find only material that
has been thrown out of the volcano. When this matter grows old and lies
under the sun and rain it turns to good soil. The acids of water and air
and plants eat into it. Rain wears it away. Plant roots crack the rocks
open. The top layer becomes powdered and rotted and mixed with vegetable
loam and is fertile soil. So the country all around the volcano is a
rich garden. Tomatoes, melons, grapes, olives, figs, cover the land.

But Vesuvius alone has not made all this ground. She is in a nest of
volcanoes. They have all been at work like her, spouting ashes and
pumice and rocks and lava. Ten miles away is a wide stretch of country
where there are more than a dozen old craters. Twenty miles out in the
blue bay a volcano stands up out of the water. A hundred miles south
is a group of small volcanic islands. They have hot springs. One has a
volcano that spouts every five or six minutes. At night it is like a
lighthouse for sailors. One of these Islands is only two thousand years
old. The men of Pompeii saw it pushed up out of the sea during an
earthquake. A little farther south is Mt. Aetna in Sicily. It is a
greater mountain than Vesuvius and has done more work than she has done.
So all the southern part of Italy seems to be the home of volcanoes and

There are many other such places scattered over the world--Iceland,
Mexico, South America, Japan, the Sandwich Islands. Here the same
terrible play is going on--thunder, clouds, falling ashes, scalding
rain, flowing lava. The earth is being turned inside out, and men are
learning what she is made of.

[ILLUSTRATION: _Bronze lampholder_: Five lamps hung from the branches
of this bronze tree. It was twenty inches high.]


Years came and went and changed the world. The old gods died, and the
new religion of Christ grew strong. The old temples fell into ruins, and
new churches were built in their places. Instead of the old Roman in his
white toga came merchants in crimson velvet and knights in steel armor
and gentlemen in ruffles and modern men in plain clothes.

Among all these changes, Pompeii was almost forgotten. But after a long
while people began to be much interested in ancient Italy. They read old
Roman books, and learned of her wonderful cities. They began to dig here
and there and find beautiful statues and vases and jewels. They read the
story of Pompeii in an old Roman book--a whole city suddenly buried just
as her people had left her!

"There we should find treasures!" they said. "We should see houses,
temples, shops, streets, as they were seventeen hundred years ago. We
should find them full of statues and rich things. Perhaps we should find
some of the people who lived in ancient days. But where to dig?"

Their question was answered by accident. At that time certain men were
making a tunnel to carry spring water from the hills across the country
to a little town near Naples. The tunnel happened to pass over buried
Pompeii. They dug up some blocks of stone with Latin inscriptions carved
on them. After that other people found little ancient relics near the
same place.

"This must be where Pompeii lies buried," the wise men said.

They began to excavate. That was about two hundred years ago. Ever since
that time the work has gone on. Sometimes people have been discouraged
and have given up. At other times six hundred men have been working
busily. Kings have given money. Emperors and princes and queens have
visited the excavations. Artists have made pictures of the ruins, and
scholars have written books about them. But it is a great task to
uncover a whole city that is buried ten or twelve feet deep. The
excavation is not yet finished. Perhaps when you are old men and women
the work will be completed, and a whole Roman city will be open to your

But even as it is to-day, that ghost of a city is among the world's
wonders. There is the thick stone wall that goes all about the town. On
its wide top the soldiers used to stand to fight in ancient days. Now
the stones are fallen; its towers are broken; its gates are open. Yet
there the battered little giant stands at its task of protecting the
town. Out of its eight gates stretch the paved streets.

Perhaps some day you will cross the ocean to visit this "dead city."
It lies on a slope at the foot of Vesuvius. Behind stands the tall,
graceful volcano with its floating feather of steam and smoke. In front
lies a little plain, and beyond it a long ridge of steep mountains. Off
at the side shines the dark blue sea with island peaks rising out of it.
On hillsides and plain are green vineyards and dark forests dotted with
white farmhouses.

In some places there are high mounds of dirt outside the city wall. They
are made by the ashes that have been dug out by the excavators and piled
here. If you climb one of them you will be able to look over the city.
You will find it a little place--less than a mile long and half a mile
wide inside its ragged wall. And yet many thousand people used to live
here. So the houses had to be crowded together. You will see no grassy
lawns nor vacant lots nor playgrounds nor parks with pleasant trees.
Many narrow streets cross one another and cut the city into solid blocks
of buildings. You will be confused because you will see thousands of
broken walls standing up, but no roofs. They are gone--crushed by the
piling ashes long ago.

At last you will come down and go in at one of the gates through the
rough, thick wall, past the empty watch towers. You will tread the very
paving stones that men's feet trampled nineteen hundred years ago as
they fled from the volcano. You will climb a steep, narrow street. This
is the street the fishermen and sailors used in olden times when they
came in from the river or sea, carrying baskets of fish or leading mules
loaded with goods from their ships. This is the street where people
poured out to the sea on that terrible day of the eruption.

You will pass a ruined temple of Apollo with standing columns and lonely
altar and steps that lead to a room that is gone. A little farther on
you will come out into a large open paved space. It is the forum. This
used to be the busiest place in all Pompeii. At certain hours of the day
it was filled with little tables and with merchants calling out and with
gentlemen and slaves buying good's. But now it is empty and very still.
Around the sides a few beautiful columns are yet standing with carved
marble at the top connecting them. But others lie broken, and most of
them are gone entirely. This is all that is left of the porches where
men used to walk and talk of business and war and politics and gossip.

At one end of the forum is a high stone platform and wide stone steps
leading up to a row of broken columns in front of a fallen wall. This is
the ruin of the temple of Jupiter, the great Roman god. Daily, men used
to come here to pray before a statue in a dim room. Here, in the ruins,
the excavators found the head of that statue--a beautiful marble thing
with long curling hair and beard, and calm face. They found, too, a
great broken body of marble. And in that large body a smaller statue was
partly carved. This was a puzzling thing, but the excavators studied it
out at last. They said:

"Old Roman books tell us that sixteen years before the great eruption
there had been another earthquake. It had shaken down many buildings and
had cracked many walls. But the people loved their city, and when the
earthquake was over, they began to rebuild and to make their houses and
temples better than ever. We have found many signs of that earthquake.
We have found uncarved blocks of marble in the forum. Evidently masons
were at work there when the eruption stopped them. We have found rebuilt
walls in some of the houses. And here is the temple of Jupiter being
used as a marble shop. Probably the early earthquake had shaken down and
broken the statue of the god. A sculptor was set to work to carve a new
one from the ruin. But suddenly the volcano burst forth, the artist
dropped his chisel and mallet, and here we have found his unfinished
work--a statue within a statue."

Behind the roofless porches of the forum are other ruined
buildings--where the officers of the city did business, where the
citizens met to vote, where tailors spread out their cloth and sold
robes and cloaks. One large market building is particularly interesting.
You will enter a courtyard with walls all around it and signs of lost
porches. Broken partitions show where little stalls used to open upon
the court. Other stalls opened upon the street. In some of these the
excavators found, buried in the ashes and charred by the fire, figs,
chestnuts, plums, grapes, glass dishes of fruit, loaves of bread, and
little cakes. Were customers buying the night's dessert when Vesuvius
frightened them away? In a cool corner of the building is a fish market
with sloping marble counter. Near it in the middle of the courtyard are
the bases of columns arranged in a circle around a deep basin in the
floor. In the bottom of this basin the excavators found a thick layer
of fish scales. Evidently the masters used to buy their fish from the
market in the corner. Then the slaves carried them here to the shaded
pool of water and cleaned them and scaled them and washed them. In
another corner the excavators found skeletons of sheep. Here was a
pen for live animals which a man might buy for his banquet or for a
sacrifice to his gods. His slave would lead the sheep away through the
crowds. But on that terrible day when the volcano belched, the poor
bleating animals were deserted. Their pen held them and the ashes
covered them and to-day we can see their skeletons.

The walls around the market are still standing, though the top is broken
and the roof is fallen. They are still covered with paintings. If you
will look at them you can guess what used to be for sale here. There are
game birds and fish and wine jars all pictured here in beautiful colors.
There are cupids playing about a flour mill and cupids weaving garlands.
There are also pictures of the gods and heroes and the deeds they did.
Imagine this painted market full of chattering people, the little shops
gay with piles of beautiful fruit and vegetables, the graceful columns
and dark porches adding beauty. Imagine these people crying out and
running and these columns swaying and falling when Vesuvius bellowed and
shook the earth. And yet we can see the very fruits that men were buying
and the pictures they were enjoying.

The forum with its markets and shops and offices and temples and statues
was the very heart of the city. Many streets led into it. Perhaps you
will walk down one of them, between broken walls, past open doorways.
After several street corners you will come to a large building with high
walls still standing and with tall, arched entrance. This also was one
of the gay places in Pompeii, for it was a bathhouse. Every day all
the ladies and gentlemen of the town came strolling toward it down the
streets. The men went in at the wide doorway. The women turned and
entered their own apartments around the corner. And as they walked
toward the entrance they passed little shops built into the walls of
the bathhouse. At every stall stood the shopkeeper, bowing, smiling,
begging, calling. "Perfumes, sweet lady!"

"Rings, rings, beautiful madam, for your beautiful fingers!"

"Oil for your body, sir, after the bath!"

"A taste of sweets, madam, before you enter! Honey cakes of my own

"Don't forget to buy my dressing for your hair before you go in! You'll
get nothing like it in there."

So they chattered and called and coaxed. Some of the people bought, and
some went laughing by and entered the bathhouse. As the gentlemen went
in, a large court opened before them. Here were men bowling or jumping
or running or punching the bag or playing ball or taking some other kind
of exercise before the bath. Others were resting in the shade of the
porches. A poet sat in a cool corner reading his verses to a few
listeners. Some men, after their games, were scraping their sweating
bodies with the strigil. Others were splashing in the marble
swimming tank. Here and there barbers were working over handsome
gentlemen--smoothing their faces, perfuming their hair, polishing their
nails. There was talk and laughter everywhere. Men were lazily coming
and going through a door that led into the baths. There were large rooms
with high ceilings and painted walls. In one we can still see the round
marble basin. The walls are painted with trees and birds and swimming
fish and statues. It was like bathing in a beautiful garden to bathe
here. Another room was for the hot bath, with double walls and hot air
circulating between to make the whole room warm. The bathhouse was a
great building full of comforts. No wonder that all the idle Pompeians
came here to bathe, to play, to visit, to tell and hear the news. It was
a gay and noisy place. We have a letter that one of those old Romans
wrote to a friend. He says:

"I am living near a bath. Sounds are heard on all sides. The men of
strong muscle exercise and swing the heavy lead weights. I hear their
groans as they strain, and the whistling of their breath. I hear the
massagist slapping a lazy fellow who is being rubbed with ointment. A
ball player begins to play and counts his throws. Perhaps there is a
sudden quarrel, or a thief is caught, or some one is singing in the
bath. And the bathers plunge into the swimming tank with loud splashes.
Above all the din you hear the calls of the hair puller and the sellers
of cakes and sweetmeats and sausages."

After you leave the baths perhaps you will turn down Stabian Street. It
has narrow sidewalks. The broken walls of houses fence it in closely
on both sides and cast black shadows across it. It is paved with clean
blocks of lava. You will see wheel ruts worn deep in the hard stone.
Almost two thousand years old they are, made by the carts of the
farmers, perhaps, who brought in vegetables for the market. At the
street crossings you will see three or four big stone blocks standing
up above the pavement. They are stepping-stones for rainy weather.
Evidently floods used to pour down these sloping streets. You can
imagine little Roman boys skipping across from block to block and trying
to keep their sandals dry.

The street will lead you to the district of good houses where the
wealthy men lived. Through open doorways you will get glimpses into the
old ruined courtyards. It is hard guessing how the rooms used to look.
But when you come to the door of the house of Vettius you will cry out
with wonder. There is a lovely garden in the corner of the house. A long
passage leads to it straight from the street. Around it runs a paved
porch with pretty columns. Here you will walk in the shade and look out
at the gay little garden, blooming in the sunshine. In every corner tiny
streams of water spurt from little statues of bronze and marble and
trickle into cool basins. Marble tables stand among the flowers. You
will half expect a slave to bring out old drinking cups and wine bowls
and set them here for his master's pleasure, or tablets and stylus for
him to write his letters. Everything is in order and beautiful. It was
not quite so when the excavators uncovered this house. The statues were
thrown down. The flowers were scorched and dead under the piled-up
ashes. But it was easy for the modern excavators to tell from the ground
where the flower beds had been and where the gravel paths. Even the
lead water pipe that carried the stream to the fountain needed little
repairing. So the excavators set up the statues, cleaned the marble
tables and benches, planted shrubs and flowers, repaired the porch roof,
and we have a garden such as the old Romans loved and such as many
houses in Pompeii had.

Several rooms look out upon this garden. One of them is perhaps the most
interesting place in all Pompeii. You will walk into it and look around
and laugh with delight. The whole wall is painted with pictures, big and
little--pictures of columns and roofs, of plants and animals, of men
and gods. They are all framed in with wide spaces of beautiful red. And
tucked away between them in narrow bands of black are the gayest little
scenes in the world. They are worth going all the way across the ocean
to see. Psyches--delicate little winged girls like fairies--are picking
slender flowers and putting them into tall, graceful baskets. They are
so light and so tiny that they seem to be flitting along the wall
like bright butterflies. In other panels plump little cupids--winged
boys--are playing at being men. They are picking grapes and working a
wine press and selling wine. It is big work for tiny creatures, and they
must kick up their dimpled legs and puff out their chubby cheeks to do
it. They are melting gold and carrying gold dishes and selling jewelry
and swinging a blacksmith's hammer with their fat little arms. They are
carrying roses to market on a ragged goat and weaving rose garlands and
selling them to an elegant little lady. Everywhere these gay little
creatures are skipping about at their play among the beautiful red
spaces and large pictures. This was surely a charming dining room in the
old days. The guests must have been merry every time their eyes lighted
upon the bright wall. And if they looked out at the open side, there
smiled the garden with its flowers and statues and splashing fountains
and columns.

There lived in this house two men by the name of Vettius. We know this
because the excavators found here two seals. In those days men fastened
their letters and receipts and bills with wax. While the wax was soft
they stamped their names in it with a metal seal. On the stamps that
were found in this house were carved Aulus Vettius Restitutus and Aulus
Vettius Conviva. Perhaps they were freedmen who once had been slaves of
Aulus Vettius. But they must have earned a fortune for themselves, for
there were two money chests in the house. And they must have had slaves
of their own to take care of their twenty rooms and more. In the tiny
kitchen the excavators found a good store of charcoal and the ashes of
a little fire on top of the stone stove. And on its three little legs
a bronze dish was sitting over the dead fire. A slave must have been
cooking his master's dinner when the volcano frightened him away.

Vettius' dining room is empty of its wooden tables and couches. But some
houses had stone ones built in their gardens for pleasant summer days.
These the ashes did not crush, and they are still in place. Columns
stood about the tables and vines climbed up them and across to make cool
shade. The tables were always long and narrow and built around three
sides of a rectangle. Low couches stand along the outside edges. Here
guests used to lie propped up on their left elbows with pretty cushions
to make them comfortable. In the open space in the middle of the square
servants came and went and passed the dishes across the narrow tables.
Children used to have little wooden stools and sit in this middle space
opposite their elders. But in one old ruined garden dining room you will
see a little stone bench for the children, built along the end of the
table. It must have been pleasant to have supper there with the sunset
coloring the sky, behind old Vesuvius, the cool breeze shaking the
leaves of the garden shrubs, and the fountain tinkling, and a bird
chirping in a corner, and the shadows beginning to creep under the long
porches, and the tiny flames of lamps fluttering in the dusky rooms

After you leave the house of Vettius and walk down the street, you will
come to a certain door. In the sidewalk before it you will see "Have"
spelled with bits of colored marble. It is the old Latin word for
"Welcome." It is too pleasant an invitation to refuse. Go in through
the high doorway and down the narrow passage to the atrium. Every Roman
house had this atrium. It is like a large reception hall with many
rooms opening off it--bedrooms, dining rooms, sitting rooms. Beautiful
hangings instead of doors used to shut these rooms in. The atrium had an
opening in the roof where the sun shone in and softly lighted the big
room. Here the master used to receive his guests. In the house of
Vettius the two money chests were found in the atrium. In this same room
in the house of "Welcome," there was found on the floor a little bronze
statue, a dancing faun, one of the gay friends of Dionysus. It is a tiny
thing only two feet high, but so pretty that the excavators named the
house after it--The House of the Faun. Evidently the old owner loved
beautiful things and had money to buy them. Even the floors of some of
his rooms are made in mosaic pictures. There are doves at play, and
ducks and fish and shells all laid under your feet in bright bits of
colored marble. And beyond the pleasant court with its porches and
garden is a large sitting room. In the floor of this the excavators
found the most wonderful mosaic picture of all, a picture of a battle,
with waving spears and prancing horses and fallen men. Two kings are
facing each other to fight--Darius, king of Persia, standing in his
chariot, and Alexander, king of Greece, riding his war horse. The bits
of stone are so small and of such perfect color that the mosaic looks
like a beautiful painting. Imagine how the excavators' hearts leaped
when the spades took the gray ashes off this bright picture. It was too
precious a thing to leave here in the rain and wind. So the excavators
carefully took it up and put it into the museum of Naples where there
are other valuable things from Pompeii.

There are many other houses almost as pleasant and beautiful as this
House of the Faun. Every one has its atrium and its sunny court and its
fountains and statues and its painted walls. But Pompeii was a city of
business, too, and had many workshops. There is a dye shop where the
excavators found large lead pots and glass bottles still full of dye.
There are cleaners' shops where the slaves used to take their masters'
robes to be cleaned. Here the excavators found vats and white clay
for cleaning, and pictures on the wall showing men at work. There are
tanneries where leather was made. The rusted tools were found which the
men had thrown down so long ago. There is a pottery shop with two ovens
for baking the vases. On a certain street corner you will see an old
wine shop. It is a little room cut into the corner wall of a great
house. Its two sides are open upon the street with broad marble
counters. Below the counters are big, deep jars. Their open tops thrust
themselves through the slab. You can look into their mouths where the
shopkeeper used to dip out the wine. On the walls of the room are marks
that show where shelves hung in ancient days to hold cups and glasses.
In the outer edge of the sidewalk before the shop are two round holes
cut into the stone. Long ago poles were thrust into them to hold an
awning that shaded the walk in front of the counters. We can imagine men
stopping in this pleasant shade as they passed. The busy slave inside
the shop whips out a cup and a graceful, long-handled ladle and dips out
the sweet-smelling wine from the wide-mouthed jar. And we can imagine
how the cups fell clattering from the men's hands when Vesuvius
thundered. In one shop, indeed, the excavators found an overturned cup
on the counter and a wine stain on the marble. But the most interesting
shops are the bakeries. There were twenty of them in Pompeii. You will
see the ovens in the courtyard. They are big beehives built of stone or
brick. The baker made a fire inside and let the walls become hot. Then
he raked out the coals and cleaned the floor and put in his bread. The
hot walls baked the loaves. In one oven the excavators found a burned
loaf eighteen hundred years old. When the earthquake shook his house,
did the baker snatch out the rest of the ovenful to feed his hungry
family as they groped about for safety in the terrible darkness?
In several bakeries you will see, also, the mills. They are great
mortar-shaped things standing taller than a man. The heavy stone above
turned around upon the stone below. A man poured wheat in at the top. It
fell down and was ground between the two stones and dropped out at the
bottom as flour. A horse or donkey was hitched to the mill to turn it.
Around and around he walked all day. He was blindfolded to prevent his
becoming dizzy. You will see on the stone floor in one bakery the path
that was made by years of this walking. In the old days this silent
empty court must have been an interesting place. The donkey's hoofs beat
lazy time on the stone floor. Now and then a slave lifted up a bag of
wheat and poured it into the mill or scooped out the white flour from
the trough at the bottom. Another man sifted the flour and the breeze
blew the white dust over his bare arms. Some of the ovens were smoking
and glowing with fresh fire. Others were shut, with the browning bread
inside, and a good smell hung in the air. And out in front was a little
shop where the master sold the thin loaves and the fancy little cakes.

In the hundreds of houses and shops of this little town the excavators
have found bronze tables and lamps and lamp stands and wine jars and
kitchen pots and pans and spoons and glass vases and silver cups and
gold hairpins and jewelry and ivory combs and bronze strigils and
mirrors and several statues of bronze and marble. But where they
had hoped to find thousands of precious things they have found only
hundreds. Many pedestals are empty of their statues. Here and there the
very paintings have been cut from the walls. Those are the pictures we
should most like to see. How beautiful could they have been?

"Evidently men came back soon after the eruption," say the excavators.
"The tops of their ruined houses must have stood up above the ashes.
They dug down and rescued their most precious things. We have even found
broken places in walls where we think men dug tunnels from one house to
another. That is why the temple and market place have so few statues.
That is why we find so little jewelry and money and dishes. But we have
enough. The city is our treasure."

One rich find they did make, however. There was a pleasant farmhouse out
of town on the slope of Vesuvius. Evidently the man who owned it had
a vineyard and an olive grove and grain fields. For there are olive
presses and wine presses and a great court full of vats for making wine
and a floor for threshing wheat and a mill for grinding flour and a
stable and a wide courtyard that must have held many carts. And there
are bathrooms and many pleasant rooms besides. In the room with the wine
presses was a stone cistern for storing the fresh grape juice. Here
the excavators found a treasure and a mystery. In this cistern lay the
skeleton of a man. With him were a thousand pieces of gold money, some
gold jewelry, and a wonderful dinner set of silver dishes. There are a
hundred and three pieces--plates, platters, cups, bowls. And every one
has beaten up from it beautiful designs of flowers and people. An artist
must have made them, and a rich man must have bought them. How did they
come here in this farmhouse? They must have been meant for a nobleman's
table. Had some thief stolen them and hidden here, only to be caught
by the volcano? Did some rich lady of the city have this farm for her
country place? And had she sent her treasure here to escape when the
volcano burst forth? At any rate here it lay for eighteen hundred years.
And now it is in a museum in Paris, far from its old owner's home.

In this buried city we find the houses in which men lived, the pictures
they loved, the food they ate, the jewels they wore, the cups they drank
from. But what of the people themselves? Were they real men and women?
How did they look? Did they all escape? Not all, for many skeletons have
been found here and there through the city--in the market place, in the
streets, in the houses. And sometimes the excavators have found still
stranger, sadder things. Often as a man has been digging in the
hard-packed ashes, his spade has struck into a hole. Then he has called
the chief excavator.

"Let us see what it is," the excavator has said, "Perhaps it will be
something interesting."

So they have mixed plaster and poured it into the hole. They have given
it a little time to harden and then have dug away the ashes from around
it. In that way they have made a plaster cast just the shape of the
hole. And several times when they have uncovered their cast they have
found it to be the form of a man or woman or child. Perhaps the person
had been hurrying through the street and had stumbled and fallen. The
gases had choked him, the ashes had slowly covered him. Under the
moistening rain and the pressure of all the hundreds of years the ashes
had hardened almost to stone. Meantime the body had decayed and had sunk
down into a handful of dust. But the hardened ashes still stood firm
around the space where the body had been. When this hole was filled with
plaster, the cast took just the form of the one who had been buried
there so long ago--the folds of his clothes, the ring on his finger, the
girl's knot of hair, the negro slave's woolly head. So we can really
look upon the faces of some of the ancient people of Pompeii. And in
another way we can learn the names of many of them.

One of the streets that leads out from the wall is called the "Street of
Tombs." It is the ancient burying ground. You will walk along the paved
street between rows of monuments. Some will be like great square altars
of marble beautifully carved. Some will be tall platforms with steps
leading up. There will be marble benches where you may sit and think of
the old Pompeians who were twice buried in their beautiful tombs. And
there on the marble monument you will see their names carved in old
Latin letters, and kind things that their friends said about them. There

Marcus Cerrinius Restitutus; Aulus Veius, who was several times an
officer of the city; Mamia, a priestess; Marcus Porcius; Numerius
Istacidius and his wife and daughter and others of his family, all in
a great tomb standing on a high platform; Titus Terentius Felix, whose
wife, Fabia Sabina, built his tomb; Tyche, a slave; Aulus Umbricius
Scaurus, whose statue was set up in the market place to do him honor;
Gaius Calventius Quietus, who was given a seat of honor at the theater
on account of his generosity; Nævoleia Tyche, who had once been a slave,
but who had been freed, had married, and grown wealthy and had slaves of
her own; Gnæus Vibius Saturninus, whose freedman built his tomb; Marcus
Arrius Diomedes, a freedman; Numerius Velasius Gratus, twelve years old;
Salvinus, six years old; and many another.

After seeing the tombs and houses and shops you will leave that little
city, I think, feeling that the people of ancient times were much like
us, that men and mountains have done wonderful things in this old world,
that it is good to know how people of other times lived and worked and



This statue, now in the Metropolitan Museum, was found at Pompeii.
Probably Caius was dressed just like this, and carried such a stick when
he played in his father's courtyard.



Nowadays men know from history what may happen when Vesuvius wakes. But
in 79 A.D., when Pompeii was buried, the mountain had slept for hundreds
of years, and no man knew that an eruption might bury a city.


The roofs are all gone and all the partitions inside the houses show.
That is why it all looks so crowded and confused. But if you study it
carefully you can see some interesting things. The big open space is
the forum. It is about five hundred feet long, running northeast and
southwest. South of it is the temple of Apollo. North of it, where you
see the bases of columns in a circle, was the market. Next to the market
is the place where the gods of the city were worshipped. The broad
street beside the forum running southeast is the one down which Ariston
fled. Then he turned into the forum, ran out the gate near the lower end
into the steep street that runs southwest and ends at a city gate near
the sea.


You must imagine this temple with an altar in front, a broad flight of
steps, and a portico of beautiful columns. You can see the street paved
with blocks of lava, the deep wheel ruts, and the stepping stones for
rainy weather.


Pompeii was surrounded by two high walls fifteen feet apart, with earth
between. An embankment of earth was piled up inside also. This is one of
the eight gates in the wall. IN THE STREET OF TOMBS.

On the tomb of Nævoleia Tyche was a carving of a ship gliding into port,
the sailors furling the sails. Within this tomb is a chamber where
funeral urns stand, containing the ashes of Tyche and her husband, and
of the slaves they had freed. Pompeians always burned the bodies of the


Like other Roman towns, Pompeii had an amphitheater. Here twenty
thousand people could come and watch the gladiators fight in pairs till
one was killed. Then the dead body was dragged off, and another pair
appeared and fought. Sometimes the gladiators were prisoners captured in
war, like the famous Spartacus; sometimes they were slaves; sometimes
criminals condemned to death. Sometimes a man was pitted against a wild
beast; sometimes two wild beasts fought each other. The amphitheater had
no roof. Vesuvius, with its column of smoke, was in plain view from the
seats. There was a great awning to protect the spectators. The lower
seats were for officials and distinguished people; for the middle rows
there was an admission fee; all the upper seats were free.


A few large houses had baths of their own, but most people went every
day to a great public bath which was a very gay place. This open court
which you see, was for games.


The temple was built on a high foundation. A broad flight of steps led
up to it, with an altar at the foot. There was a porch all round it held
up by a row of columns. Some of the columns have stood up through all
the earthquakes and eruptions of two thousand years. Inside the porch
was a small room for the statue of Apollo. In the paved court around
this temple were many altars and statues of the gods. This was at one
time the most important temple in Pompeii.


In this large open court the gladiators had their training and practice.
In small cells around the court they lived. They were kept under close
guard, for they were dangerous men. Sixty-three skeletons were found
here, many of them in irons.


Pompeii had two theaters for plays and music, besides the amphitheater
where the gladiators fought. The smaller theater, unlike the others, had
a roof. It seated fifteen hundred people. We think perhaps contests in
music were held here.


A boar, a ram, and a bull are to be killed, and a part of the flesh is
to be burned on the altar to please the gods.


On the walls of a room in a house in Pompeii men found this picture,
showing how interesting the life of the forum was. At the left is a
table where a man has kitchen utensils for sale. But he is dreaming and
does not see a customer coming. So his friend is waking him up. Near him
is a shoemaker selling sandals to some women.


Underneath are two ivory toilet boxes. One was probably for perfumed


These were found hanging in a ring in one of the great public baths. You
see a flask for oil, a saucer to pour the oil into, and four scrapers to
scrape off the oil and dirt before a plunge.


With the columns and tables and statues that were found, this court has
been built on the site of an old ruined villa. Flowers bloom and the
fountain plays in it to-day just as they did over two thousand years
ago. There are wall paintings in the shadows at the back. The little
boys holding the ducks must look very much like Caius when he was a
little boy. When he went to the farm in the hills for a hot summer, he
had ducks to play with; here are statues to remind him, in the winter
time, of what fun that was.

A garden like this, not generally so large, was laid out _inside_ every
important house in Pompeii. The family rooms surrounded it. These rooms
received most of their light and air from this garden. Caius was lying
on a couch in a garden like this, when the shower of pebbles suddenly
began. Ariston was painting the walls of a room that overlooked the


This is part of a beautiful wall painting in a Pompeian house, the sort
of painting that Ariston was making when the volcano burst forth. See
how much the little boy looks like his mother, and what beautiful bands
they both have in their hair. Chairs like this one have been found in
the ruins, and the same design is on many other pieces of furniture.

The Metropolitan Museum owns the complete wall paintings for a Pompeian
room. They are put up just as they were in Pompeii. There is even an
iron window grating. A beautiful table from Pompeii stands in the
center. The room is one of the gayest in the whole museum, with its rich
reds and bright yellows, greens, and blues.


In this house the cook must have been in the kitchen, just ready to go
to work when he had to flee. He left the pot on a tripod on a bed of
coals, ready for use. You can see an arched opening underneath the
fireplace. This was where the cook kept his fuel. The small size of
the kitchens shows that the Pompeians were not great gluttons.


These kettles and frying pans and ladles are made of bronze, an alloy of
copper and tin. They look very much like our kitchen furnishings.


Some rich Pompeian had a pair of beautiful silver cups with graceful
handles. The design was made in hammered silver, and showed centaurs
talking to cupids that are sitting on their backs. A centaur was half
man, half horse.


From the ruins and from ancient books, men know almost all the rooms of
a Pompeian house. So they have pictured this one as it was before the
disaster, with its many beautiful wall paintings, its mosaic floors, its
tiled roofs. If you can imagine these two halves fitted together, and
yourself inside, you can visit one of the most attractive houses in
Pompeii. Do you see how the tiled roof slants downward from four sides
to a rectangular opening in the highest part of the house? Below this
opening was a shallow basin into which the rainwater fell. This basin
was in the center of the atrium, the most important room in the house.
The walls of this room were painted with scenes from the Trojan war.
This is the house which has the mosaic picture of a dog on the floor of
the long entrance hall (see next page). On each side of the hall, facing
the street, are large rooms for shops, where, doubtless, the owner
conducted his business. He was not a "Tragic Poet." Some people think he
was a goldsmith. On each side of the atrium were sleeping rooms. Can you
see that the doors are very high with a grating at the top to let in
light and air? Windows were few and small, and generally the rooms took
light and air from the inside courts rather than from outside. Back of
the atrium was a large reception room with bedrooms on each side. And
back of this was a large open court, or garden, with a colonnade on
three sides and a solid wall at the back. Opening on this garden was a
large dining room with beautiful wall paintings, a tiny kitchen, and
some sleeping rooms. This house had stairways and second story rooms
over the shops. This seems to us a very comfortable homelike house.

THE HOUSE OF THE TRAGIC POET (as it looks to-day).

Here you see the shallow basin in the floor of the atrium. This basin
had two outlets. You can see the round cistern mouth near the pool.
There was also an outlet to the street to carry off the overflow. At the
back of the garden you can see a shrine to the household gods. At every
meal a portion was set aside in little dishes for the gods.


From the vestibule of the House of the Tragic Poet. It says loudly,
"Beware the dog!" Pictures and patterns made of little pieces of
polished stone like this are called mosaic. Sometimes American
vestibules are tiled in a simple mosaic. Wouldn't it be fun if they had
such exciting pictures as this? A real dog, or two or three, probably
was standing inside the door, chained, or held by slaves.


There was a wine cellar under the colonnade. Here were twenty skeletons;
two, children. Near the door were found skeletons of two men. One had a
large key, doubtless the key of this door. He wore a gold ring and was
carrying a good deal of money. He was probably the master of the house.
Evidently the family thought at first that the wine cellar would be a
safe place, but when they found that it was not so, the master took one
slave and started out to find a way to escape. But they all perished.



If one of the mills that were found in the bakery were sawed in two, it
would look like this. You can see where the baker's man poured in the
wheat, and where the flour dropped down, and the heavy timbers fastened
to the upper millstone to turn it by.


This Lucius was an auctioneer who had set free one of his slaves, Felix.
Felix, in gratitude, had this portrait of his master cast in bronze.
It stood on a marble pillar in the atrium of the house.


It is the figure of the Roman God Silenus. He was the son of Pan, and
the oldest of the satyrs, who were supposed to be half goat. Can you
find the goat's horns among his curls? He was a rollicking old satyr,
very fond of wine, always getting into mischief. The grape design at the
base of the little statue, and the snake supporting the candleholder,
both are symbols of the sileni.


In one of the largest and most elegant houses in Pompeii, on the floor
of the atrium, or principal room of the house, men found in the ashes
this bronze statue of a dancing faun. Doesn't he look as if he loved
to dance, snapping his fingers to keep time? Although this great house
contained on the floor of one room the most famous of ancient mosaic
pictures, representing Alexander the Great in battle, and although it
contains many other fine mosaics, it was named from this statue, the
House of the Faun, Casa del Fauno.


This bronze statue was found in Herculaneum, the city on the other slope
of Vesuvius which was buried in liquid mud. This mud has become solid
rock, from sixty to one hundred feet deep so that excavation is very
difficult, and the city is still for the most part buried.


The visitors to-day are walking where Caius walked so long ago on the
same paving stones. The three stones were set up to keep chariots out of
the forum.

[ILLUSTRATION: _A Vase Store_]



The July sun was blazing over the country of Greece. Dust from the dry
plain hung in the air. But what cared the happy travelers for dust or
heat? They were on their way to Olympia to see the games. Every road
teemed with a chattering crowd of men and boys afoot and on horses. They
wound down from the high mountains to the north. They came along the
valley from the east and out from among the hills to the south. Up from
the sea led the sacred road, the busiest of all. A little caravan of men
and horses was trying to hurry ahead through the throng. The master
rode in front looking anxiously before him as though he did not see the
crowd. After him rode a lad. His eyes were flashing eagerly here and
there over the strange throng. A man walked beside the horse and watched
the boy smilingly. Behind them came a string of pack horses with slaves
to guard the loads of wine and food and tents and blankets for their
master's camp.

"What a strange-looking man, Glaucon!" said the boy. "He has a dark

The boy's own skin was fair, and under his hat his hair was golden. As
he spoke he pointed to a man on the road who was also riding at the head
of a little caravan. His skin was dark. Shining black hair covered his
ears. His garment was gay with colored stripes.

"He is a merchant from Egypt," answered the man. "He will have curious
things to sell--vases of glass, beads of amber, carved ivory, and
scrolls gay with painted figures. You must see them, Charmides."

But already the boy had forgotten the Egyptian.

"See the chariot!" he cried.

It was slowly rolling along the stony road. A grave, handsome man stood
in it holding the reins. Beside him stood another man with a staff in
his hand. Behind the chariot walked two bowmen. After them followed a
long line of pack horses led by slaves. "They are the delegates from
Athens," explained Glaucon. "There are, doubtless, rich gifts for Zeus
on the horses and perhaps some stone tablets engraved with new laws."

But the boy was not listening.

"Jugglers! Jugglers!" he cried.

And there they were at the side of the road, showing their tricks and
begging for coins. One man was walking on his hands and tossing a ball
about with his feet. Another was swallowing a sword.

"Stop, Glaucon!" cried Charmides, "I must see him. He will kill

"No, my little master," replied the slave. "You shall see him again at
Olympia. See your father. He would be vexed if we waited."

And there was the master ahead, pushing forward rapidly, looking neither
to the right hand nor the left. The boy sighed.

"He is hurrying to see Creon. He forgets me!" he thought.

But immediately his eyes were caught by some new thing, and his face
was gay again. So the little company traveled up the sloping road amid
interesting sights. For here were people from all the corners of the
known world--Greeks from Asia in trailing robes, Arabs in white turbans,
black men from Egypt, kings from Sicily, Persians with their curled
beards, half civilized men from the north in garments of skin. "See!"
said Glaucon at last as they reached a hilltop, "the temple!"

He pointed ahead. There shone the tip of the roof and its gold ornament.
Hovering above was a marble statue with spread wings.

"And there is Victory!" whispered Charmides. "She is waiting for Creon.
She will never wait for me," and he sighed.

The crowd broke into a shout when they saw the temple. A company of
young men flew by, singing a song. Charmides passed a sick man. The
slaves had set down his litter, and he had stretched out his hands
toward the temple and was praying. For the sick were sometimes cured
by a visit to Olympia. The boy's father had struck his heels into his
horse's sides and was galloping forward, calling to his followers to

In a few moments they reached higher land. Then they saw the sacred
place spread out before them. There was the wall all around it. Inside
it shone a few buildings and a thousand statues. Along one side
stretched a row of little marble treasure houses. At the far corner lay
the stadion with its rows of stone seats. Nearer and outside the wall
was the gymnasium. Even from a distance Charmides could see men running
about in the court.

"There are the athletes!" he thought. "Creon is with them."

Behind all these buildings rose a great hill, dark green with trees.
Down from the hill poured a little stream. It met a wide river that
wound far through the valley. In the angle of these rivers lay Olympia.
The temple and walls and gymnasium were all of stone and looked as
though they had been there forever. But in the meadow all around the
sacred place was a city of winged tents. There were little shapeless
ones of skins lying over sticks. There were round huts woven of rushes.
There were sheds of poles with green boughs laid upon them. There were
tall tents of gaily striped canvas. Farther off were horses tethered.
And everywhere were gaily robed men moving about. Menon, Charmides'
father, looking ahead from the high place, turned to a slave.

"Run on quickly," he said. "Save a camping place for us there on Mount
Kronion, under the trees."

The man was off. Menon spoke to the other servants. "Push forward and
make camp. I will visit the gymnasium. Come, Charmides, we will go to
see Creon."

They rode down the slope toward Olympia. As they passed among the tents
they saw friends and exchanged kind greetings.

"Ah, Menon!" called one. "There is good news of Creon. Every one expects
great things of him."

"I have kept room for your camp next my tent, Menon," said another.

"Here are sights for you, Charmides," said a kind old man.

Charmides caught a glimpse of gleaming marble among the crowd and
guessed that some sculptor was showing his statues for sale. Yonder was
a barber's tent. Gentlemen were sitting in chairs and men were cutting
their hair or rubbing their faces smooth with stone. In one place a
man was standing on a little platform. A crowd was gathered about him
listening, while he read from a scroll in his hands.

But the boy had only a glimpse of these things, for his father was
hurrying on. In a moment they crossed a bridge over a river and stopped
before a low, wide building. Glaucon helped Charmides off his horse.
Menon spoke a few words to the porter at the gate. The man opened the
door and led the visitors in. Charmides limped along beside his father,
for he was lame. That was what had made him sigh when he had seen
Victory hovering over Olympia. She would never give him the olive
branch. But now he did not think of that. His heart was beating fast.
His eyes were big. For before him lay a great open court baking in the
sun. More than a hundred boys were at work there, leaping, wrestling,
hurling the disk, throwing spears. During the past months they had been
living here, training for the games. The sun had browned their bare
bodies. Now their smooth skins were shining with sweat and oil. As they
bent and twisted they looked like beautiful statues turned brown and
come alive. Among them walked men in long purple robes. They seemed to
be giving commands.

"They are the judges," whispered Glaucon. "They train the boys."

All around the hot court ran a deep, shady portico. Here boys lay on
the tiled floor or on stone benches, resting from their exercise. Near
Charmides stood one with his back turned. He was scraping the oil and
dust from his body with a strigil. Charmides' eyes danced with joy
at the beauty of the firm, round legs and the muscles moving in the
shoulders. Then the athlete turned toward the visitors and Charmides
cried out, "Creon!" and ran and threw his arms around him.

Then there was gay talk; Creon asked about the home and mother and
sisters in Athens, for he had been here in training for almost ten
months. Menon and Charmides had a thousand questions about the games.

"I know I shall win, father," said Creon softly. "Four nights ago Hermes
appeared to me in my sleep and smiled upon me. I awoke suddenly and
there was a strange, sweet perfume in the air."

Tears sprang into his father's eyes. "Now blessed be the gods!" he
cried, "and most blessed Hermes, the god of the gymnasium!"

After a little Menon and Charmides said farewell and went away through
the chattering crowd and up under the cool trees on Mount Kronion to
their camp. The slaves had cut poles and set them up and thrown a wide
linen cover over them. Under it they had put a little table holding
lumps of brown cheese, a flat loaf of bread, a basket of figs, a pile
of crisp lettuce. Just outside the tent grazed a few goats. A man in a
soiled tunic was squatted milking one. Menon's slave stood waiting and,
as his master came up, he took the big red bowl of foaming milk and
carried it to the table. The goatherd picked up his long crook and
started his flock on, calling, "Milk! Milk to sell!"

Menon was gay now. His worries were over. His camp was pitched in a
pleasant place. His son was well and sure of victory.

"Come, little son," he called to Charmides. "You must be as hungry as a
wolf. But first our thanks to the gods."

A slave had poured a little wine into a flat cup and stood now offering
it to his master. Menon took it and held it high, looking up into the
blue heavens.

"O gracious Hermes!" he cried aloud, "fulfill thy omen! And to Zeus, the
father, and to all the immortals be thanks."

As he prayed he turned the cup and spilled the wine upon the ground.
That was the god's portion. A slave spread down a rug for his master
to lie upon and put cushions under his elbow. Glaucon did the same for
Charmides, and the meal began. Menon talked gaily about their journey,
the games to-morrow, Creon's training. But Charmides was silent. At last
his father said:

"Well, little wolf, you surely are gulping! Are you so starved?"

"No," said Charmides with full mouth. "I'm in a hurry. I want to see

His father laughed and leaped to his feet.

"Just like me, lad. Come on!"

Charmides snatched a handful of figs and rolled out of the tent
squealing with joy. Menon came after him, laughing, and Glaucon followed
to care for them. "The sun is setting," said Menon. "It will soon be
dark, and to-morrow are the games. They will keep us busy when they
begin, so you must use your eyes to-day if you want to see the fair."

He stopped on the hillside and looked down into the sacred place.

"It is wonderful!" he said, half to himself. "The home of glory! I love
every stone of it. I have not been here since I myself won the single
race. And now my son is to win it. That was when you were a baby,

"I know, father," whispered the boy with shining eyes. "I have kissed
your olive wreath, where it hangs above our altar at home."

The father put his hand lovingly on the boy's yellow head.

"By the help of Hermes there soon will be a green one there for you to
kiss, lad. The gods are very good to crown our family twice."

"I wish there were crowns for lame boys to win," said Charmides. "I
would win one!"

He said that fiercely and clenched his fist. His father looked kindly
into his eyes and spoke solemnly.

"I think you would, my son. Perhaps there are such crowns."

They started on thoughtfully and soon were among the crowd. There were
a hundred interesting sights. They passed an outdoor oven like a little
round hill of stones and clay. The baker was just raking the fire out of
the little door on the side. Charmides waited to see him put the loaves
into the hot cave. But before it was done a horn blew and called him
away to a little table covered with cakes.

"Honey cakes! Almond cakes! Fig cakes!" sang the man. "Come buy!"

There they lay--stars and fish and ships and temples. Charmides picked
up one in the shape of a lyre.

"I will take this one," he said, and solemnly ate it.

"Why are you so solemn, son?" laughed Menon.

The boy did not answer. He only looked up at his father with deep eyes
and said nothing. But in a moment he was racing off to see some rope

"Glaucon," said the master to the slave, "take care of the boy. Give him
a good time. Buy him what he wants. Take him back to camp when he is
tired. I have business to do."

Then he turned to talk with a friend, who had come up, and Glaucon
followed his little master.

What a good time the boy had! The rope dancers, the sword swallowers,
the Egyptian with his painted scroll, a trained bear that wrestled with
a wild-looking man dressed in skins, a cooking tent where whole sheep
were roasting and turning over a fire, another where tiny fish were
boiling in a great pot of oil and jumping as if alive--he saw them all.
He stood under the sculptors' awning and gazed at the marble people more
beautiful than life. And when he came upon Apollo striking his lyre, his
heart leaped into his mouth. He stood quiet for a long time gazing at
this god of song. Then he walked out of the tent with shining eyes.

At last it grew dark, and torches began to blaze in front of the booths.

"Shall we go home, Charmides?" said Glaucon.

"Oh, no!" cried the boy. "I haven't seen it all. I am not tired. It is
gayer now than ever with the torches. See all those shining flames."

And he ran to a booth where a hundred little bronze lamps hung, each
with its tongue of clear light. It was an imagemaker's booth. The table
stood full of little clay statues of the gods. Charmides took up one. It
was a young man leaning against a tree trunk. On his arm he held a baby.

"It is a model of the great marble Hermes in the temple of Hera, my
little master," said the image maker. "Great Praxiteles made that one,
poor Philo made this one."

"It is beautiful," said Charmides and turned away, holding it tenderly
in his hand.

Glaucon waited a moment to pay for the figure. Then he followed
Charmides who had walked on. He was standing on the bridge gazing at the

"Glaucon," he said, "I must see that statue of Hermes."

They stood there talking about the wonderful works of Praxiteles and of
many another artist. Glaucon pointed to a little wooden shed lying in
the meadow.

"That," he said, "is the workshop of Phidias. There he made the gold and
ivory statue of Zeus that you shall see in Zeus's temple. That workshop
will stay there many a year, I think, for people to love because so
great a thing was done there."

"Is it so wonderful?" asked Charmides.

"When it was finished," Glaucon answered solemnly, "Phidias stood before
it and prayed to Zeus to tell him whether it pleased the god. Great Zeus
heard the prayer, and in his joy at the beautiful thing he hurled a
blazing thunderbolt and smote the floor before the statue as if to say,
'This image is Zeus himself.' But I have never seen it, for a slave may
not pass the sacred wall."

Now the full moon had risen, and the world was swimming in silver light.
The statue of Victory hung over the sacred place on spread wings. Many
another great form on its high pillar seemed standing in the deep sky
above the world. The little pool in the pebbly river had stars in the

"This Kladeos is a savage little river in the spring," said Glaucon. "It
tries to tear away our Olympia or drown it or cover it with sand. You
see, men have had to fence it in with stone walls."

But Charmides was looking at the sacred place and its soft shining
statues in the sky.

"Let us walk around the wall," he said.

So they left the river and passed the gymnasium and the gate. Along this
side the wall cast a wide shadow. Here they walked in silence. Here
there were no tents, no torches, no noisy people. Everything was quiet
in the evening air. The far-off sounds of the fair were a gentle hum. A
hundred pictures were floating in Charmides' mind--Phidias, Zeus, Creon
with the strigil, his own little Hermes, the strange people in the fair,
the marble Apollo under the sculptor's tent. In a few moments they
turned a corner and came out into the soft moonlight. A little beyond
gleamed a broad river, the Alphaeus. Charmides and the slave went over
and strolled along its banks. Here they were again in the crowd and
among tents. They saw a group of people and went toward them. A man
sat on a low knoll a little above the crowd. His hair hung about his
shoulders and his long robe lay in glistening folds about his feet. A
lyre rested on his knees, and he was striking the strings softly. The
sweet notes floated high in the moonlit air. At last he lifted his voice
and sang:

  When the swan spreadeth out his wings to alight
  On the whirling pools of the foaming stream,
  He sendeth to thee, Apollo, a note.
  When the sweet-voiced minstrel lifteth his lyre
  And stretcheth his hand on the singing string,
  He sendeth to thee, Apollo, a prayer.
  Even so do I now, a worshiping bard,
  With my heart lifted up to begin my lay,
  Cry aloud to Apollo, the lord of song.

Then he sang of that lordliest of all minstrels, Orpheus--how the trees
swung circling about to his music; how the savage beasts lay down at his
feet to listen; how the rocks rose up at his bidding and followed him,
dancing, to build a town without hands; how he went to the dismal land
of the dead to seek his wife and with his clear lyre and sweet voice
drew tears from the iron heart of the king of hell and won back his
loved Eurydice and lost her again the same hour.

The boy, sitting there in the moonlight, went floating away on the song
until he felt himself straying through that fair garden of the dead with
singing lyre or riding with Artemis through the sky in her moon chariot.

When the song was ended, Glaucon said, "Come, little master, you have
fallen asleep. Let us go home."

And Charmides rose and went, still clutching his image of Hermes in his
hand and still holding the song fast in his heart.

In the morning the whole great camp was awake and moving long before
daylight. Every man and boy was in his fairest clothes. On every head
was a fresh fillet. Every hand bore some beautiful gift for the gods--a
vase, a plate of gold, an embroidered robe, a basket of silver. All were
pouring to the open gate in the sacred wall. Here a procession formed.
Young men led cattle with gilded horns and swinging garlands, or sheep
with clean, combed wool. Stately priests in long chitons paced to the
music of flutes. The judges glowed in their purple robes. Then walked
the athletes, their eyes burning with excitement. And last came all the
visitors with gift-laden hands. The slaves and foreigners crowded at
the gate to see the procession pass, for on this first holy day only
freedmen and Greeks of pure blood might visit the sacred shrines. When
Charmides passed through, his heart leaped. Here was no empty field with
a few altars. He had never seen a greater crowd in the busy market place
at home in Athens. But here the people were even more beautiful than
the Athenians. Their limbs were round and perfect. They stood always
gracefully. Their garments hung in delicate folds, for they were people
made by great artists--people of marble and of bronze. All the gods of
Olympos were there, and athletes of years gone by, wrestling, running,
hurling the disc. There were bronze chariots with horses of bronze to
draw them and men of bronze to hold the reins. There were heroes of Troy
still fighting. And here and there were little altars of marble or
stone or earth or ashes with an ancient, holy statue. At every one the
procession halted. The priests poured a libation and chanted a prayer.
The people sang a hymn. Many left gifts piled about the altar. Before
Hermes Charmides left his little clay image of the god. And while
the priests prayed aloud, the boy sent up a whispered prayer for his

Once the procession came before a low, narrow temple. It was of
sun-dried bricks coated with plaster. Its columns were all different
from one another. Some were slender, others thick; some fluted, others
plain; and all were brightly painted. Charmides smiled up at his father.

"It is not so beautiful as the Parthenon," he said.

"No," his father answered, "but it is very old and very holy. Every
generation of man has put a new column here. That is why they are not
alike. This is the ancient temple of Hera."

Then they entered the door. Down the long aisle they walked between
small open rooms on either side. Here stood statues gazing out--some of
marble, some of gold and ivory. The priests had moved to the front and
stood praying before the ancient statues of Zeus and Hera. But suddenly
Charmides stopped and would go no farther. For here, in a little room
all alone, stood his Hermes with the baby Dionysus. The boy cried out
softly with joy and crept toward the lovely thing. He gently touched the
golden sandal. He gazed into the kind blue eyes and smiled. The marble
was delicately tinted and glowed like warm skin. A frail wreath of
golden leaves lay on the curling hair. Charmides looked up at the tiny
baby and laughed at its coaxing arms.

"Are you smiling at him?" he whispered to Hermes. "Or are you dreaming
of Olympos? Are you carrying him to the nymphs on Mount Nysa?" And then
more softly still he said, "Do not forget Creon, blessed god."

When his father came back he found him still gazing into the quiet face
and smiling tenderly with love of the beautiful thing. As Menon led him
away, he waved a loving farewell to the god.

The most wonderful time was after the sacrifice to Zeus before the great
temple with its deep porches and its marble watchers in the gable.
The altar was a huge pile of ashes. For hundreds of years Greeks had
sacrificed here. The holy ashes had piled up and piled up until they
stood as a hill more than twenty feet high. The people waited around the
foot of it, watching. The priests walked up its side. Men led up the
sleek cattle to be slain for the feast of the gods. And on the very top
a fire leaped toward heaven. Far up in the sky Charmides could half
see the beautiful gods leaning down and smiling upon their worshiping

Then he turned and walked with the crowd under the temple porch and into
the great, dim room. He trembled and grasped his father's hand in awe.
For there in the soft light towered great Zeus. In embroidered robes of
dull gold he sat high on his golden throne. His hands held his scepter
and his messenger eagle. His great yellow curls almost touched the
ceiling. He bent his divine face down, and his deep eyes glowed upon his
people. Sweet smoke was curling upward, and the room rang with a hymn.

As Charmides gazed into the solemn face, a strange light quivered about
it, and the boy's heart shook with awe. The words of Homer sprang to his

"Zeus bowed his head. The divine hair streamed back from the kindly
brows, and great Olympos quaked."

After the sacrifices were over there was time to wander again among the
statues and to sit on the benches under the cool porches and watch the
moving crowd and the glittering sun on the gold ornaments of the temple
peaks. Then there was time to see again the strange sights of the fair
in the plain. The next morning was noisier and gayer than anything
Charmides had ever known. While it was still twilight his father hurried
him down the hill and through the gates, on through the sacred enclosure
to another gate. And all about them was a hurrying, noisy crowd. They
stumbled up some steps and began to wait. As the light grew, Charmides
saw all about him men and boys, sitting or standing, and all gaily
talking. Below the crowd he saw a long, narrow stretch of ground. He
clapped his hands. That was the ground Creon's feet would run upon! Up
and down both sides of the track went long tiers of stone seats. They
were packed with people who were there to see Creon win. The seats
curved around one narrow end of the course. But across the other end
stood a wall with a gate. Menon pointed to a large white board hanging
on the wall and said, "See! The list of athletes."

Here were written names, and among them, "Creon, son of the Olympic
winner Menon." Charmides' eyes glowed with pride.

Every eye was watching the gate. Soon the purple-clad judges entered.
Some of them walked the whole length of the stadion and took their seats
opposite the goal posts. Two or three waited at the starting line. There
was a blast of a trumpet. Then a herald cried something about games
for boys and about only Greeks of pure blood and about the blessing of
Hermes of the race course.

Immediately there entered a crowd of boys, while the spectators sent
up a rousing cheer. The lads gathered to cast lots for places. At last
eight of them stepped out and stood at the starting line. Creon was not
among them. A post with a little fluttering flag was between every two.
The boys threw off their clothes and stood ready. One of the judges said
to them:

"The eyes of the world are upon you. Your cities love an Olympic winner.
From Olympos the gods look down upon you. For the glory of your cities,
for the joy of your fathers, for your own good name, I exhort you to do
your best."

Then he gave the signal and the runners shot forward. Down the long
course they went with twinkling legs. The spectators cheered, called
their names, waved their chlamyses and himations. Their friends cried
to the gods to help. Down they ran, two far ahead, others stringing out
behind. Every runner's eyes were on the marble goal post with its little
statue of Victory. In a moment it was over, and Leotichides had first
laid hand upon the post and was winner of the first heat.

Immediately eight other boys took their places at the starting line.
Charmides snatched his father's hand and held it tight, for Creon was
one of them. Another signal and they were off, with Creon leading by
a pace or two. So it was all the way, and he gave a glad shout as he
touched the goal post.

Charmides heard men all about him say:

"A beautiful run!"

"How easily he steps!"

"We shall see him do something in the last heat."

"Who is he?"

And when the herald announced the name of the winner, the benches buzzed

"Creon, Creon, son of Menon the Athenian."

Four more groups were called and ran. Then the six winners stepped up
to the line. This time the goal was the altar at the farther end of the
stadion. A wave of excitement ran around the seats. Everybody leaned
forward. The signal! Leotichides sprang a long pace ahead. Next came
Creon, loping evenly. One boy stumbled and fell behind. The other three
were running almost side by side. Menon was muttering between his teeth:

"Hermes, be his aid! Great Zeus look upon him! Herakles give him wind!"

Now they were near the goal, and Leotichides was still leading by a
stride. Then Creon threw back his head and stretched out his legs and
with ten great leaps he had touched the altar a good pace ahead. He had
won the race.

The crowd went wild with shouting. Menon leaped over men's heads and
went running down the course calling for his son. But the guards caught
him and forced him back upon the seats. Charmides sat down and wept for
joy. And nobody saw him, for everybody was cheering and watching the

One of the judges stepped out and gave a torch to Creon. The boy touched
the flame to the pile on the altar. As the fire sprang up, he stretched
his hands to the sky and cried,

"O blessed Hermes, Creon will not forget thy help."

As he turned away the judge gave him a palm in sign of victory. The boy
walked back down the course with the palm waving over his shoulder. His
body was glistening, his cheeks were flushed, his eyes were burning
with joy. He was looking up at the crowd, hoping to see his father and
brother. And at every step men reached out a hand to him or called
to him, until at last Menon's own loving arms pulled him up upon the
benches. Then there was such a noise that no one heard any one else, but
everybody knew that everybody was happy. Men pushed their heads over
other men's shoulders, and boys peeped between their fathers' legs to
see the Olympic winner. And in that circle of faces Menon stood with
his arms about Creon, laughing and crying. And Charmides clung to his
brother's hand. But at last Creon whispered to his father:

"I must go and make ready. I am entered for the pentathlon, also."

Menon cried out in wonder.

"I kept that news for a surprise," laughed Creon. "Good-by, little one,"
he said to Charmides, and pushed through the crowd.

Menon sat down trembling. If his boy should win in the pentathlon also!
That would be too great glory. It could not happen. He began to mutter a
hundred prayers. Another race was called--the double race, twice around
the course. But Menon did not stand to see it. He could think of nothing
but his glorious son. After the race was another great shout. Some other
boy was carrying a palm. Some other father was proud. Then followed
wrestling, bout after bout, and cheering from the crowd. But Menon cared
little for it all.

It was now near noon. The sun shone down scorchingly. A wind whirled
dust up from the race course into people's faces.

"My throat needs wetting," cried a man.

He pulled off a little vase of wine that hung from his girdle and passed
it to Menon, saying:

"I should be proud if the father of the victor would drink from my

And Menon took it, smiling proudly. Then he himself opened a little
cloth bag and drew out figs and nuts.

"Here is something to munch, lad," he said to Charmides.

Other people, also, were eating and drinking. They walked about to visit
their friends or sat down to rest. Menon's neighbor sank upon his seat
with a sigh.

"This is the first time I have sat down since sunrise," he laughed.

Then the pentathlon was announced. Everyone leaped to his feet again. A
group of boys stood ready behind a line. One of the judges was softening
the ground with a pick. An umpire made a speech to the lads. Then, at a
word, a boy took up the lead jumping weights. He swung his hands back
and forth, swaying his graceful body with them. Then a backward jerk! He
threw his weights behind him and leaped. The judges quickly measured
and called the distance. Then another boy leaped, and another, and
another--twenty or more. Last Creon took the weights and toed the line.

"Creon! Creon!" shouted the crowd: "The victor! Creon again!"

He swung and swayed and then sailed through the air.

"By Herakles!" shouted a man near Charmides. "He alights like a

There went up a great roar from the benches even before the judges
called the distance. For any one could see that he had passed the
farthest mark. The first of the five games was over and Creon had won

Now the judges brought a discus. A boy took it and stepped behind the
line. He fitted the lead plate into the crook of his hand. He swung it
back and forth, bending his knees and turning his body. Then it flew
into the air and down the course. Where it stopped rolling an umpire
marked and called the distance.

"I like this game best of all," said a man behind Charmides. "The whole
body is in it. Every movement is graceful. See the curve of the back,
the beautiful bend of the legs, the muscles working over the chest! The
body moves to and fro as if to music."

One after another the boys took their turn. But when Creon threw,
Charmides cried out in sorrow, and Menon groaned. His disc fell short of
the mark. He was third.

"It was gracefully done," Charmides heard some one say, "but his arms
are not so good as his legs. See the arms and chest of that Timon. No
one can throw against him."

After that a judge set up a shield in the middle of the course. Every
boy snatched a spear from a pile on the ground and threw at the central
boss of the shield. Again Creon was beaten. Phormio of Corinth, son of a
famous warrior, won.

Then they paired off for wrestling. Creon and Eudorus of Aegina were
together. Each boy poured oil into his hand from a little vase and
rubbed the body of his antagonist to limber his muscles. Then he took
fine sand from a box and dusted it over his skin for the oiled body
might slip out of his arms in the wrestling match. Then, at a signal,
the pairs of wrestlers faced each other.

Creon held his hands out ready, bent his knees, thrust forward his head,
and stood waiting. Eudorus leaped to and fro around him trying to get a
hold. At last he rushed at him. Creon caught him around the waist and
hurled him to the ground. Charmides laughed and shouted and clapped
his hands. That was one throw. There must be three. Eudorus was up
immediately and was circling around and around again. Suddenly Creon
leaped low and caught him by the leg and threw him. He had won two bouts
out of three and stood victor without a throw.

Soon all the pairs had finished. The eight victors stood forth and cast
lots for new partners. Again they wrestled. This time, also, Creon won.
Then these four winners paired off and wrestled, and at the end Creon
and Timon were left to try it together.

In the first bout the Spartan boy lifted Creon off the ground and threw
him, back down. Then the men on the benches began shouting advice.

"Look out for his arms!"

"Don't let him grapple you!"

"Feint, feint!"

Creon leaped to his feet. He began circling around Timon as Eudorus had
circled around him. He dodged out from under Timon's arms. He wriggled
from between his hands. The benches rang with cheers and laughs.

"He is an eel," cried one man.

Suddenly Creon ducked under Timon's arms, caught him by his legs and
tripped him. The two boys were even.

In the next bout Timon ran at Creon like a wild bull. He caught him
around the waist in his strong arms to whirl him to the ground. But with
a crook of his leg Creon tripped him and wriggled out of his arms before
he fell.

Menon caught up Charmides and threw him to his shoulder laughing and
stamping his feet.

"Do you see, lad?" he cried. "He has won two games. Only the race is
left, and we know how he can run."

And how he did run! He threw back his head and leaped out like a deer,
skimming over the ground in long strides and leaving his dust to the
others. He had the three games out of five and was winner of the

Then there was no holding the crowd. They poured down off the seats and
ran to Creon. Some lifted him upon their shoulders and carried him out
of the stadion, for this was the end of the games for that day. And
those who could not come near Creon and his waving palms crowded around
Menon. So they went, shouting, out of the gate and among the statues and
on to the river. There they put Creon down, and his father and Charmides
led him away to camp.

That was the happiest night of Charmides' life. He heard his wonderful
brother talk for hours of the life in the gymnasium. He heard new tales
of Creon's favorite god, Hermes. He heard of the women's games that were
held once a year at Olympia in honor of Hera. He heard a hundred new
names of boys and cities, for there had been, athletes from every corner
of Greece in training here. He held the victor's palms in his own hands.
He slept beside this double winner of Olympic crowns. He dreamed that
Apollo and Hermes came hand in hand and gazed down at him and Creon as
they lay sleeping and dropped a great garland over them both. It was
twined of Olympic olive leaves and Apollo's own laurel.

On the next day there were games for the men, like those the boys had
played. On the day after that there were chariot races in a wide place
outside the walls. Every night there was still the gay noise of the
fair. But instead of going to see it, Charmides stretched himself under
the trees on Mount Kronion and gazed up at the moon and dreamed.

Then came the last day, with its great procession again and its
sacrifices at every altar. The proud victors walked with their palm
leaves in their hands. In the temple of Zeus, under the eyes of the
glowing god, the priests put the precious olive crowns upon the winners'
heads. They were made from sacred olive leaves. They were cut with a
golden sickle from the very tree that godlike Herakles had brought out
of the far north. That wreath it was which should be more dear than a
chest of gold to Creon's family and Creon's city. That was the crown
which poets should sing about. When the priest set the crown upon
Creon's head, Charmides thought he felt a god's hands upon his own brow.
Menon leaned upon a friend's shoulder and burst into tears.

"I could die happy now," he said. "I have done enough for Athens in
giving her such a glorious son."

As the three walked back to camp, Menon said:

"Who shall write your chorus of triumph, Creon? Already my messengers
have reached Athens, and the dancers are chosen who shall lead you home.
But the song is not yet made. It must be a glorious one!"

Then Charmides blushingly whispered,

"May I sing you something, father? Apollo helped me to make it."

His father smiled down in surprise. "So that is why you have been lying
so quiet under the trees these moonlit nights!" he said.

Charmides ran ahead and was sitting thrumming a lyre when his father
and Creon came up. He struck a long, ringing chord and raised his clear
voice in a dancing song:

  When Creon, son of Menon, bore off the Olympic olive,
  Mount Kronion shook with shouting of Hellas' hosts assembled.
  They praised his manly beauty, his grace and strength of body.
  They praised his eyes' alertness, the smoothness of his muscles.
  They blessed his happy father and wished themselves his brothers.
  Sweet rang the glorious praises in ears of Creon's lovers.
  But I, when upward gazing, beheld a sight more wondrous.
  The gates of high Olympos were open wide and clanging,
  Deserted ev'ry palace, the golden city empty.
  And all the gods were gathered above Olympia's race-course,
  They smiled upon my Creon and gifts upon him showered.
  From golden Aphrodite dropped half a hundred graces.
  Athene made him skillful. Boon Hermes gave him litheness.
  Fierce Ares added courage, Queen Hera happy marriage.
  Diana's blessed fingers into his soul shed quiet.
  Lord Bacchus gave him friendship and graces of the banquet,
  Poseidon luck in travel, and Zeus decreed him victor.
  Apollo, smiling, watched him and saw his thousand blessings.
  "Enough," he said, "for Creon. I'll bless the empty-handed."
  He turned to where I trembled, and stepping downward crowned me.
  "To thee my gift," he whispered, "to sing thy brother's glory."

"Well done, little poet!" cried Menon.

"A happy man am I. One son is beloved by Hermes, the other by Apollo.
Bring wax tablets, Glaucon, and write down the song. I will prepare a
messenger to hurry with it to Athens."

So it happened that a lame boy won a crown. And when Creon stepped
ashore at Pirseus, and all Athens stood shouting his name, a chorus of
boys came dancing toward him singing his brother's song. Creon was led
home wearing Zeus' wreath upon his head, and Charmides with Apollo's
crown in his heart. [Illustration: _A Coin of Alexander the Great_. It
shows Zeus sitting on his throne.]


Such was Olympia long ago. Every four years such games took place. Then
the plain was crowded and busy and gay. Year after year new statues were
set up, new gifts were brought, new buildings were made. Olympia was
one of the richest places in the world. Its fame flew to every land. At
every festival new people came to see its beauties. It was the meeting
place of the world.

But meantime the bad fortune of Greece began. Her cities quarreled and
fought among themselves. A king came down from the north and conquered
her. After that the Romans sailed over from Italy and conquered her
again. Often Roman emperors carried off some of her statues to make Rome
beautiful. Shipload after shipload they took. The new country was filled
with Greek statues. The old one was left almost empty. Later, after
Christ was born, and the Romans and the Greeks had become Christian, the
emperor said,

"It is not fitting for Christians to hold a festival in honor of a
heathen god." And he stopped the games. He took away the gold and silver
gifts from the treasure houses. He carried away the gold and ivory
statues. Where Phidias' wonderful Zeus went nobody knows. Perhaps the
gold was melted to make money. Olympia sat lonely and deserted by her
river banks. Summer winds whirled dust under her porches. Rabbits made
burrows in Zeus' altar. Doors rusted off their hinges. Foxes made their
dens in Hera's temple. Men came now and then to melt up a bronze statue
for swords or to haul away the stones of her temples for building.
The Alpheios kept eating away its banks and cutting under statues and
monuments. Many a beautiful thing crumbled and fell into the river and
was rolled on down to the sea. Men sometimes found a bronze helmet or a
marble head in the bed of the stream.

After a long time people came and lived among the ruins. On an old
temple floor they built a little church. Men lived in the temple of
Zeus, and women spun and gossiped where the golden statue had sat. In
the temple of Hera people set up a wine press. Did they know that the
little marble baby in the statue near them was the god of the vineyard
and had taught men to make wine? Out of broken statues and columns and
temple stones they built a wall around the little town to keep out their
enemies. Sometimes when they found a bronze warrior or a marble god they
must have made strange stories about it, for they had half forgotten
those wonderful old Greeks. But the marble statues they put into a kiln
to make lime to plaster their houses. The bronze ones they melted up for
tools. Sometimes they found a piece of gold. They thought themselves
lucky then and melted it over into money.

But an earthquake shook down the buildings and toppled over the statues.
The columns and walls of the grand old temple of Zeus fell in a heap.
The marble statues in its pediments dropped to the ground and broke.
Victory fell from her high pillar and shattered into a hundred pieces.
The roof of Hera's temple fell in, and Hermes stood uncovered to the
sky. Old Kronion rocked and sent a landslide down over the treasure
houses. Kladeos rushed out of his course and poured sand over the sacred

That earthquake frightened the people away, and they left Olympia alone
again. Hermes was still there, but he looked out upon ruins. Victory lay
in a heap of fragments. Apollo was there, but broken and buried in earth
with the other people of the pediments. Zeus and all the hundreds of
heroes and athletes were gone. So it was for a while. Then a new race of
people came and built another little town upon the earth-covered ruins.
They little guessed what lay below their poor houses. But for some
reason this town, also, died and left the ruins alone. Then dusty winds
and flooding rivers began to cover up what was left. Kladeos piled up
sand fifteen feet deep. Alpheios swung out of its banks and washed away
the race-course for chariots. Under the rains and floods the sun-dried
bricks of Hera's walls melted again into clay and covered the floor.
Again the earth quaked, and Hermes fell forward on his face, and little
was left of the beautiful old Olympia. Grass and flowers crept in from
the sides. Seeds blew in and shrubs and trees took the place of columns.
Soon the flowers and the animals had Olympia to themselves. A few gray
stones thrust up through the soil. So it was for hundreds of years.
Greece was conquered by the men of Venice and then by the Turks. But
Olympia, in its far corner, was forgotten and untouched except when a
Turkish officer or farmer went there to dig a few stones out of the
ground. And they knew nothing of the ancient gods and the ancient
festival and the old story of the place, for they were foreigners and
new people.

But about a hundred years ago Englishmen and Germans and Frenchmen began
to visit Greece. They went to see, not her new Turkish houses or her
Venetian castles or the strange dress of her new people, but her old
ruins and the signs of her old glory. These men had read of Olympia in
ancient Greek books and they knew what statues and buildings had once
stood there. They wrote back to their friends things like this:

"I saw a piece of a huge column lying on top of the ground. It was seven
feet across. It must have belonged to the temple of Zeus."

"To-day I saw a long, low place in the ground where I think must have
been the stadion in ancient days."

At last, about thirty years ago, Ernst Curtius and several other Germans
went there. They were men who had studied Greek history and Greek art
and they planned to excavate Olympia.

"We will uncover the sacred enclosure again. Men shall see again the
ancient temples and altars, the stadion, the statues."

Germany had given them money for the work, and at last Greece allowed
them to begin. In October they started their digging. Workmen up-rooted
shrubs and dug away dirt. Excavators watched every spadeful. They were
always measuring, making maps, taking notes. They found a few vases,
terra cotta figures, pieces of bronze statues, swords and armor. They
cleared off temple floors and were able to make out the plans of the old
buildings. They found the empty pedestals of many statues. Yet they were
disappointed. Olympia had been a beautiful place, a rich place. They
were finding only the hints of these things. The beauty was gone. Of the
three thousand statues that had been there should they not find one?

Then they uncovered the fallen statues of the pediments of Zeus' temple.
Thirty or more there were--Apollo, Zeus, heroes, women, centaurs,
horses. Arms were gone, heads were broken, legs were lost. The
excavators fitted together all the pieces and set the mended statues up
side by side as they had been in the gable. They found, too, the carved
marble slabs that showed the labors of Herakles. But even these were not
the lovely things that people had hoped to see from Olympia. They were
rather stiff and ungraceful. They had not been made by the greatest
artists. In the temple of Hera one day men were digging in clay. Over
all the rest of Olympia was only sand. The excavators wondered for a
long time why this one spot should have clay. Where could it have come
from? They read their old books over and over. They thought and studied.
At last they said:

"The walls of the temple must have been made of sun-dried brick. In the
old days they must have been covered with plaster. This and the roof
kept them dry. But the plaster cracked off, and the roof fell in, and
the rain and the floods turned the bricks back to clay again."

Then one May morning, when the men were digging in the clay, a workman
lifted off his spadeful of dirt, and white marble gleamed out. After
that there was careful work, with all the excavators standing about to
watch. What would it be? They thought over all the statues that the
ancient books said had stood in Hera's temple. Then were slowly
uncovered, a smooth back, a carved shoulder, a curly head. A white
statue of a young man lay face down in the gray clay. The legs were
gone. The right arm was missing. From his left hung carved drapery. On
his left shoulder lay a tiny marble hand.

"It is the Hermes of Praxiteles," the excavators whispered among

In his day Praxiteles had been almost as famous as Phidias. The old
Greek world had rung with his praises. Modern men had dreamed of what
his statues must have been and had longed to see them. How did he shape
the head? How did his bodies curve? What expression was on his faces?
All these things they had wished to know. But not one of his statues
had ever been found. Now here lay one before the very eyes of these
excavators. They put out their hands and lovingly touched the polished
marble skin. But what would they find when they lifted it?--Perhaps the
nose would be gone, the face flattened by the fall, the ears broken, the
beautiful marble chipped. They almost feared to lift it. But at last
they did so.

When they saw the face, they were struck dumb by its beauty, and I think
tears sprang into the eyes of some of them. No such perfect piece of
marble had ever been found before. There was not a scratch. The skin
still glowed with the polishing that Praxiteles' own hands had given it.
There was even a hint of color on the lips. The soft clay bed had saved
the falling statue. Here was a statue that the whole world would love.
It would make the name of Olympia famous again. The excavators were
proud and happy. That old ruined temple seemed indeed a sacred place to
them as they gazed upon perhaps the most beautiful statue in the world.

"Surely we shall find nothing else so perfect," they said.

Yet they went on with the work. Before long Hermes' right foot was found
imbedded in the clay. Its sandal still shone with the gilding put on two
thousand years before. Workmen were tearing down one of the houses of
the little town that had been built on the ancient ruins. Every stone in
it had some old story. Pieces of fluted columns, carved capitals, broken
pedestals, blocks from the temple of Zeus--all were cemented together to
make these walls. The workmen pulled and chipped and lifted out piece
after piece. The excavators studied each scrap to see whether it was
valuable. And at last they found a baby's body. They carefully broke off
the mortar. It was of creamy marble, beautifully carved. They carried it
to Hermes. It fitted upon the drapery over his arm. On a rubbish heap
outside the temple they had found a little marble head. They put it upon
this baby's shoulders. It was badly broken, but they could see that it
belonged there. So after two thousand years Hermes again smiled into the
eyes of the baby Dionysus.

Other things were found. The shattered Victory was uncovered. Carefully
the excavators fitted the pieces together. But the wide wings could
never be made again, and the head was ruined. Even so, the statue is a
beautiful thing, with its thin drapery flying in the wind.

After five years the work was finished. Now again hundreds of visitors
journey to Olympia every year. They see no gleaming roofs and
high-lifted statues and joyful games. They walk among sad ruins. But
they can tread the gymnasium floor where Creon and many another victor
wrestled. They can enter the gate of the grass-grown stadion. They can
see the fallen columns of the temple of Zeus. In the museum they can see
the statues of its pediments and, at the end of the long hall, they
see Victory stepping toward them. They can wander on the banks of the
Kladeos and the Alpheios. They can climb Mount Kronion and see the whole
little plain and imagine it gay with tents and moving people.

All these things are interesting to those who like the old Greek life.
But most people make the long journey only to see Hermes. In the museum,
in a little room all alone, he stands, always calm and lovable, always
dreaming of something beautiful, always half smiling at the coaxing



This was not the gate where Charmides entered. This entrance was
reserved for the judges, the competitors, and the heralds. Inside there
were seats for forty-five thousand people. On one side the hill made a
natural slope for seats. But on the other sides a ridge of earth had to
be built up. The track was about two hundred yards long. Only the two
ends have been excavated. The rest still lies deep under the sand.


Here Creon and the other boys spent a month in training before the
games. The gymnasium had a covered portico as long as the track in the
stadion, where the boys could run in bad weather. A Greek boy of to-day
is playing on his shepherd's pipes in the foreground, and they are the
same kind of pipes on which the old Greeks played.


From a vase painting. They are wrestling, jumping with weights, throwing
the spear, throwing the discus, while their teachers watch them. One man
is saying, "A beautiful boy, truly."


When we see a picture of fallen broken columns lying about a field
in disorder, we try to learn how the original building looked and to
imagine it in all its beauty. This, men believe, is the way the Temple
of Zeus looked. The figures in the pediment were all of Parian marble.
In the center stands Zeus himself. A chariot race is about to be run,
and the contestants stand on either side of Zeus. Zeus gave the victory
to Pelops, and Pelops became husband of Hippodameia, and king of Pisa,
and founded the Olympic Games. These games were held every fourth year
for more than a thousand years.

  Note: This and the following plates of the Labors of Herakles and the
  statue of Victory, were photographed from Curtius and Adler's
  "Olympia: Die Ergebnisse der von dem Deutschen Reich Veranstalteten
  Ausgrabung," etc. This is one of the most beautiful books ever made
  for a buried city.

Boys and girls who can reach the Metropolitan Museum Library should not
miss it. It is in many volumes, each almost as large as the top of the
table, and you do not need to read German to appreciate the plates.


Under the porches of the Temple of Zeus were twelve pictures in marble,
six at each end, showing the Labors of Herakles. Herakles was highly
honored at Olympia and, according to one tale, he, instead of Pelops,
was the founder of the Olympic Games.

[Illustration: Herakles and the Nemean lion.--_Metropolitan Museum_]

[Illustration: Herakles and the hydra.--_Metropolitan Museum_]


In the sand, not far from the Temple of Zeus, the explorers found the
fragments of this statue. It shows the goddess flying down from heaven
to bring victory to the men of Messene and Naupaktos. So the victors
must have erected this statue at Olympia in gratitude.

Something like the picture used as the frontispiece, men believe the
statue looked originally. It stood upon a base thirty feet high so that
the goddess really looked as if she were descending from heaven.


This shows the ruins of the temple where Charmides saw the statue of
Hermes, perhaps the most beautiful statue in the world.


The Greek artist who made this statue believed that a beautiful body is
glorious, as well as a beautiful mind, and a fine spirit. Do you
think his statue shows all these things? The original is now at the
Metropolitan Museum.


The artist had great skill who could chisel out of marble such a strong,
bold rider, and such a spirited horse.

  This picture and the one before it are not pictures of things found at
  Olympia. They are two of the most beautiful statues of Greek athletes,
  and we give them to remind you of the sort of people who came to the
  games at Olympia.



Thirty years ago a little group of people stood on a hill in Greece. The
hilltop was covered with soft soil. The summer sun had dried the grass
and flowers, but little bushes grew thick over the ground. In this way
the hill was like an ordinary hill, but all around the edge of it ran
the broken ring of a great wall. In some places it stood thirty feet
above the earth. Here and there it was twenty feet thick. It was built
of huge stones. At one place a tower stood up. In another two stone
lions stood on guard. It was these ruined walls that interested the
people on the hill. One of the men was a Greek. A red fez was on his
head. He wore an embroidered jacket and loose white sleeves. A stiff
kilted skirt hung to his knees. He was pointing about at the wall and
talking in Greek to a lady and gentleman. They were visitors, come to
see these ruins of Mycenae.

"Once, long, long ago," he was saying, "a great city was inside these
walls. Giants built the walls. See the huge stones. Only giants could
lift them. It was a city of giants. See their great ovens."

He pointed down the hill at a doorway in the earth. "You cannot see well
from here. I will take you down. We can look in. A great dome, built of
stone, is buried in the earth. A passage leads into it, but it is filled
with dirt. We can look down through the broken top. The room inside is
bigger than my whole house. There giants used to bake their bread. Once
a wicked Turk came here. He was afraid of nothing. He said, 'The giants'
treasure lies in this oven. I will have it.' So he sent men down. But
they found only broken pieces of carved marble--no gold."

While the guide talked, the gentleman was tramping about the walls. He
peered into all the dark corners. He thrust a stick into every hole. He
rubbed the stones with his hands. At last he turned to his guide.

"You are right," he said. "There was once a great city inside these
walls. Houses were crowded together on this hill where we stand. Men and
women walked the streets of a city that is buried under our feet, but
they were not giants. They were beautiful women and handsome men.

"It was a famous old city, this Mycenae. Poets sang songs about her. I
have read those old songs. They tell of Agamemnon, its king, and his
war against Troy. They call him the king of men. They tell of his
gold-decked palace and his rich treasures and the thick walls of his

"But Agamemnon died, and weak kings sat in his palace. The warriors of
Mycenae grew few, and after hundreds of years, when the city was old and
weak, her enemies conquered her. They broke her walls, they threw down
her houses, they drove out her people. Mycenae became a mass of empty
ruins. For two thousand years the dry winds of summer blew dust over her
palace floors. The rains of winter and spring washed down mud from her
acropolis into her streets and houses. Winged seeds flew into the cracks
of her walls and into the corners of her ruined buildings. There they
sprouted and grew, and at last flowers and grass covered the ruins.
Now only these broken walls remain. You feed your sheep in the city of
Agamemnon. Down there on the hillside farmers have planted grain above
ancient palaces. But I will uncover this wonderful city. You shall see!
You shall see how your ancestors lived.

"Oh! for years I have longed to see this place. When I was a little boy
in Germany my father told me the old stories of Troy, and he told me of
how great cities were buried. My heart burned to see them. Then, one
night, I heard a man recite some of the lines of Homer. I loved the
beautiful Greek words. I made him say them over and over. I wept because
I was not a Greek. I said to myself, 'I will see Greece! I will study
Greek. I will work hard. I will make a bankful of money. Then I will
go to Greece. I will uncover Troy-city and see Priam's palace. I
will uncover Mycenae and see Agamemnon's grave.' I have come. I have
uncovered Troy. Now I am here. I will come again and bring workmen with
me. You shall see wonders." He walked excitedly around and around the
ruins. He told stories of the old city. He asked his wife to recite
the old tales of Homer. She half sang the beautiful Greek words. Her
husband's eyes grew wet as he listened.

This man's name was Dr. Henry Schliemann. He kept his word. He went
away but he came again in a few years. He hired men and horse-carts. He
rented houses in the little village. Myceae was a busy place again after
three thousand years. More than a hundred men were digging on the top
of this hill. They wore the fezes and kilts of the modern Greek. Little
two-wheeled horse-carts creaked about, loading and dumping.

Some of the men were working about the wall near the stone lions.

"This is the great gate of the city," said Dr. Schliemann. "Here the
king and his warriors used to march through, thousands of years ago. But
it is filled up with dirt. We must clear it out. We must get down to the
very stones they trod."

But it was slow work. The men found the earth full of great stone
blocks. They had to dig around them carefully, so that Dr. Schliemann
might see what they were.

"How did so many great stones come here?" they said among themselves.

Then Dr. Schliemann told them. He pointed to the wall above the gate.

"Once, long, long ago," he said, "the warriors of Mycenae stood up
there. Down here stood an army--the men of Argos, their enemies. The men
of Argos battered at the gate. They shot arrows at the men of Mycenae,
and the men of Mycenae shot at the Argives, and they threw down great
stones upon them. See, here is one of those broken stones, and here, and
here. After a long time the people of Mycenae had no food left in their
city. Their warriors fainted from hunger. Then the Argives beat down the
gate. They rushed into the city and drove out the people. They did not
want men ever again to live in Mycenae, so they took crowbars and tried
to tear down the wall. A few stones they knocked off. See, here, and
here, and here they are, where they fell off the wall. But these great
stones are very heavy. This one must weigh a hundred twenty tons,--more
than all the people of your village. So the Argives gave up the attempt,
and there stand the walls yet. Then the rain washed down the dirt from
the hill and covered these great stones, and now we are digging them out

The men worked at the gateway for many weeks. At last all the dirt and
the blocks had been cleared away. The tall gateway stood open. A hole
was in the stone door-casing at top and bottom. Schliemann put his hand
into it.

"See!" he cried. "Here turned the wooden hinge of the gate."

He pointed to another large hole on the side of the casing. "Here the
gatekeeper thrust in the beam to hold the gate shut."

Just inside the gate he found the little room where the keeper had
stayed. He found also two little sentry boxes high up on the wall. Here
guards had stood and looked over the country, keeping watch against
enemies. From the gate the wall bent around the edge of the hilltop,
shutting it in. In two places had been towers for watchmen. Inside this
great wall the king's palace and a few houses had been safe. Outside,
other houses had been built. But in time of war all the people had
flocked into the fortress. The gate had been shut. The warriors had
stood on the wall to defend their city.

But while some of Dr. Schliemann's men were digging at the gateway and
the wall, others were working outside the city. They were making a great
hole, a hundred and thirteen feet square. They put the dirt into baskets
and carried it to the little carts to be hauled away. And always Dr.
Schliemann and his wife worked with them. From morning until dusk every
day they were there. It was August, and the sun was hot. The wind blew
dust into their faces and made their eyes sore, and yet they were happy.
Every day they found some little thing that excited them,--a terra cotta
goblet, a broken piece of a bone lyre, a bronze ax, the ashes of an
ancient fire.

At first Dr. Schliemann and his wife had fingered over every spadeful
of dirt. There might be something precious in it. "Dig carefully,
carefully!" Dr. Schliemann had said to the workmen. "Nothing must be
broken. Nothing must be lost. I must see everything. Perhaps a bit of a
broken vase may tell a wonderful story."

But during this work of many weeks he had taught his workmen how to dig.
Now each man looked over every spadeful of earth himself, as he dug it
up. He took out every scrap of stone or wood or pottery or metal and
gave it to Schliemann or his wife. So the excavators had only to study
these things and to tell the men where to work. When a man struck some
new thing with his spade, he called out. Then the excavators ran to
that place and dug with their own hands. When anything was found, Dr.
Schliemann sent it to the village. There it was kept in a house under
guard. At night Dr. Schliemann drew plans of Mycenae. He read again old
Greek books about the city. As he read he studied his plans. He wrote
and wrote.

"As soon as possible, I must tell the world about what we find," he said
to his wife. "People will love my book, because they love the stories of

There had been four months of hard work. A few precious things had
been uncovered,--a few of bronze and clay, a few of gold, some carved
gravestones. But were these the wonders Schliemann had promised? Was
this to be all? They had dug down more than twenty feet. A few more
days, and they would probably reach the solid rock. There could be
nothing below that. November was rainy and disagreeable. The men had to
work in the mud and wet. There was much disappointment on the hilltop.

Then one day a spade grated on gravel. Once before that had happened,
and they had found gold below. They called out to Dr. Schliemann. He and
his wife came quickly. Fire leaped into Schliemann's eyes.

"Stop!" he said. "Now I will dig. Spades are too clumsy."

So he and his wife dropped upon their knees in the mud. They dug with
their knives. Carefully, bit by bit, they lifted the dirt. All at once
there was a glint of gold.

"Do not touch it!" cried Schliemann, "we must see it all at once. What
will it be?"

So they dug on. The men stood about watching. Every now and then they
shouted out, when some wonderful thing was uncovered, and Schliemann
would stop work and cry,

"Did not I tell you? Is it not worth the work?"

At last they had lifted off all the earth and gravel. There was a great
mass of golden things--golden hairpins, and bracelets, and great golden
earrings like wreaths of yellow flowers, and necklaces with pictures
of warriors embossed in the gold, and brooches in the shape of stags'
heads. There were gold covers for buttons, and every one was molded into
some beautiful design of crest or circle or flower or cuttle-fish.

And among them lay the bones of three persons. Across the forehead of
one was a diadem of gold, worked into designs of flowers. "See!" cried
Schliemann, "these are queens. See their crowns, their scepters."

For near the hands lay golden scepters, with crystal balls.

And there were golden boxes with covers. Perhaps long ago, one of these
queens had kept her jewels in them. There was a golden drinking cup with
swimming fish on its sides. There were vases of bronze and silver and
gold. There was a pile of gold and amber beads, lying where they had
fallen when the string had rotted away from the queenly neck. And
scattered all over the bodies and under them were thin flakes of gold in
the shapes of flowers, butterflies, grasshoppers, swans, eagles, leaves.
It seemed as though a golden tree had shed its leaves into the grave.

"Think! Think! Think!" cried Schliemann. "These delicate lovely things
have lain buried here for three thousand years. You have pastured your
sheep above them. Once queens wore them and walked the streets we are

The news of the find spread like wildfire over the country. Thousands of
people came to visit the buried city. It was the most wonderful treasure
that had ever been found. The king of Athens sent soldiers to guard the
place. They camped on the acropolis. Their fires blazed there at night.
Schliemann telegraphed to the king:

"With great joy I announce to your majesty that I have discovered
the tombs which old stories say are the graves of Agamemnon and his
followers. I have found in them great treasures in the shape of ancient
things in pure gold. These treasures, alone, are enough to fill a great
museum. It will be the most wonderful collection in the world. During
the centuries to come it will draw visitors from all over the earth to
Greece. I am working for the joy of the work, not for money. So I give
this treasure, with much happiness, to Greece. May it be the corner
stone of great good fortune for her."

The work went on, and soon they found another grave, even more
wonderful. Here lay five people--two of them women, three of them
warriors. Golden masks covered the faces of the men. Two wore golden
breastplates. The gold clasp of the greave was still around one knee.
Near one man lay a golden crown and a sceptre, and a sword belt of gold.
There was a heap of stone arrowheads, and a pile of twenty bronze swords
and daggers. One had a picture of a lion hunt inlaid in gold. The wooden
handles of the swords and daggers were rotted away, but the gold nails
that had fastened them lay there, and the gold dust that had gilded
them. Near the warriors' hands were drinking cups of heavy gold. There
were seal rings with carved stones. There was the silver mask of an
ox head with golden horns, and the golden mask of a lion's head. And
scattered over everything were buttons, and ribbons, and leaves, and
flowers of gold.

Schliemann gazed at the swords with burning eyes.

"The heroes of Troy have used these swords," he said to his wife,
"Perhaps Achilles himself has handled them." He looked long at the
golden masks of kingly faces.

"I believe that one of these masks covered the face of Agamemnon. I
believe I am kneeling at the side of the king of men," he said in a
hushed voice.

Why were all these things there? Thousands of years before, when their
king had died, the people had grieved.

"He is going to the land of the dead," they had thought. "It is a dull
place. We will send gifts with him to cheer his heart. He must have
lions to hunt and swords to kill them. He must have cattle to eat. He
must have his golden cup for wine."

So they had put these things into the grave, thinking that the king
could take them with him. They even had put in food, for Schliemann
found oyster shells buried there. And they had thought that a king, even
in the land of the dead, must have servants to work for him. So they had
sacrificed slaves, and had sent them with their lord. Schliemann found
their bones above the grave. And besides the silver mask of the ox head
they had sent real cattle. After the king had been laid in his grave,
they had killed oxen before the altar. Part they had burned in the
sacred fire for the dead king, and part the people had eaten for the
funeral feast. These bones and ashes, too, Schliemann found. For a long,
long time the people had not forgotten their dead chiefs. Every year
they had sacrificed oxen to them. They had set up gravestones for them,
and after a while they had heaped great mounds over their graves.

That was a wonderful old world at Mycenae. The king's palace sat on a
hill. It was not one building, but many--a great hall where the warriors
ate, the women's large room where they worked, two houses of many
bedrooms, treasure vaults, a bath, storehouses. Narrow passages led from
room to room. Flat roofs of thatch and clay covered all. And there were
open courts with porches about the sides. The floors of the court were
of tinted concrete. Sometimes they were inlaid with colored stones. The
walls of the great hall had a painted frieze running about them. And
around the whole palace went a thick stone wall.

One such old palace has been uncovered at Tiryns near Mycenae. To-day
a visitor can walk there through the house of an ancient king. The
watchman is not there, so the stranger goes through the strong old
gateway. He stands in the courtyard, where the young men used to play
games. He steps on the very floor they trod. He sees the stone bases of
columns about him. The wooden pillars have rotted away, but he imagines
them holding a porch roof, and he sees the men resting in the shade. He
walks into the great room where the warriors feasted. He sees the hearth
in the middle and imagines the fire blazing there. He looks into the
bathroom with its sloping stone floor and its holes to drain off the
water. He imagines Greek maidens coming to the door with vases of water
on their heads. He walks through the long, winding passages and into
room after room. "The children of those old days must have had trouble
finding their way about in this big palace," he thinks.

Such was the palace of the king. Below it lay many poorer houses, inside
the walls and out. We can imagine men and women walking about this city.
We raise the warriors from their graves. They carry their golden cups in
their hands. Their rings glisten on their fingers, and their bracelets
on their arms. Perhaps, instead of the golden armor, they wear
breastplates of bronze of the same shape, but these same swords hang at
their sides. We look at their golden masks and see their straight noses
and their short beards. We study the carving on their gravestones, and
we see their two-wheeled chariots and their prancing horses. We look at
the carved gems of their seal rings and see them fighting or killing
lions. We look at their embossed drinking cups, and we see them catching
the wild bulls in nets. We gaze at the great walls of Mycenae, and
wonder what machines they had for lifting such heavy stones. We look at
a certain silver vase, and see warriors fighting before this very wall.
We see all the beautiful work in gold and silver and gems and ivory, and
we think, "Those men of old Mycenae were artists."



Digging within this circle, Dr. Schliemann found the famous treasure
of golden gifts to the dead, which he gave to Greece. In the Museum at
Athens you can see these wonderful things. (From a photograph in the
Metropolitan Museum.)


This picture is taken from Dr. Schliemann's own book on his work.


The stone over the gateway is immensely strong. But the wall builders
were afraid to pile too great a weight upon it. So they left a
triangular space above it. You can see how they cut the big stones with
slanting ends to do this. This triangle they filled with a thinner
stone carved with two lions. The lions' heads are gone. They were made
separately, perhaps of bronze, and stood away from the stone looking out
at people approaching the gate.


No wonder the untaught modern Greeks thought that this was a giants'
oven, where the giants baked their bread. But learned men have shown
that it was connected with a tomb, and that in this room the men
of Mycenae worshipped their dead. It was very wonderfully made and
beautifully ornamented. The big stone over the doorway was nearly thirty
feet long, and weighs a hundred and twenty tons. Men came to this
beehive tomb in the old days of Mycenae, down a long passage with a high
stone wall on either side. The doorway was decorated with many-colored
marbles and beautiful bronze plates. The inside was ornamented, too, and
there was an altar in there.


From these ruins and relics, we know much about the art of the
Mycenaeans, something about their government, their trade, their
religion, their home life, their amusements, and their ways of fighting,
though they lived three thousand years ago. If a great modern city
should be buried, and men should dig it up three thousand years later,
what do you think they will say about us?


This mask was still on the face of the dead king. The artist tried to
make the mask look just as the great king himself had looked, but this
was very hard to do.


The king's people put into his grave this silver mask of an ox head with
golden horns. It was a symbol of the cattle sacrificed for the dead.
There is a gold rosette between the eyes. The mouth, muzzle, eyes and
ears are gilded. In Homer's Iliad, which is the story of the Trojan war,
Diomede says, "To thee will I sacrifice a yearling heifer, broad at
brow, unbroken, that never yet hath man led beneath the yoke. Her will I
sacrifice to thee, and gild her horns with gold."


This vase was made of clay and baked. Then the artist painted figures on
it with colored earth. This was so long ago that men had not learned to
draw very well, but we like the vase because the potter made it such a
beautiful shape, and because we learn from it how the warriors of early
Mycenae dressed. Under their armor they wore short chitons with fringe
at the bottom, and long sleeves, and they carried strangely shaped
shields and short spears or long lances. Do you think those are
knapsacks tied to the lances?


These may have been worn by King Agamemnon, or by the Trojan warriors.
They are now in the Metropolitan Museum in New York.


Early men made many pictures much like this--a pillar guarded by an
animal on each side.


It would take a very skilfull man to-day, a man who was both goldsmith
and artist, to make such daggers as men found at Mycenae. First the
blade was made. Then the artist took a separate sheet of bronze for his
design. This sheet he enamelled, and on it he inlaid his design. On one
of these daggers we see five hunters fighting three lions. Two of the
lions are running away. One lion is pouncing upon a hunter, but his
friends are coming to help him. If you could turn this dagger over, you
would see a lion chasing five gazelles. The artist used pure gold for
the bodies of the hunters and the lions; he used electron, an alloy of
gold and silver, for the hunters' shields and their trousers; and he
made the men's hair, the lions' manes, and the rims of the shields, of
some black substance. When the picture was finished on the plate, he
set the plate into the blade, and riveted on the handle. On the smaller
dagger we see three lions running.


It shows the kind of helmet used in Mycenae. Do you think the button at
the top may have had a socket for a horse hair plume?


These brooches were like modern safety pins, and were used to fasten the
chlamys at the shoulder. The chlamys was a heavy woolen shawl, red or


Some people say that these cups are the most wonderful things that
have been found, made by Mycenaean artists. Some people say that no
goldsmiths in the world since then, unless perhaps in Italy in the
fifteenth century, have done such lovely work. The goldsmith took a
plate of gold and hammered his design into it from the wrong side. Then
he riveted the two ends together where the handle was to go, and lined
the cup with a smooth gold plate. One cup shows some hunters trying to
catch wild bulls with a net. One great bull is caught in the net. One
is leaping clear over it. And a third bull is tossing a hunter on his
horns. On the other cup the artist shows some bulls quietly grazing in
the forest, while another one is being led away to sacrifice.

The Vaphian cups are now in the National museum in Athens. They were
found in a "bee-hive" tomb at Vaphio, an ancient site in Greece, not far
from Sparta. It is thought that they were not made there, but in Crete.


At Mycenae were found seven hundred and one large round plates of gold,
decorated with cuttlefish, flowers, butterflies, and other designs.

GOLD ORNAMENT. (Lower right hand corner.)


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