Archaeologists have discovered petrified horses bones, perfectly preserved, north of the ancient city of Pompeii, destroyed by the eruption of Vesuvius in the year 79. The find, described as important and rare, shows that the ruins of the famous Italian city have not yet delivered all their secrets.
According to the BBC, the horses, many of which are still equipped with their harness, were discovered inside an ancient villa. The position of one of the animals seems to show that he was about to run off.
The horses have reportedly belonged to a senior military officer, according to the director general of the archaeological site Massimo Osanna, quoted by the Italian news agency ANSA. “They had a terrible and violent end,” he said.
Pompeii is the most visited site in Italy after the Colosseum of Rome, with more than three million tourists in the first eight months of the year. Several discoveries have been made in recent years on the site, including recently the skeleton of a man who was crushed by a huge stone projected during the eruption.
A prosperous Roman city of the Roman Empire, Pompeii was rediscovered in the 18th century, but it was only during the reign of Benito Mussolini, in the first half of the 20th century, that the site was largely cleared of ashes and fire pumice. About a quarter of the city is still buried.