Information concerning the rooms in Casa del Fabbro

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Entranceway F
Room 01
Room 02
Front hall 03
Room 04
Room 05
Room 06
Room 07
Room 08
Room 09
Ambulatory 10
Room 11
Garden 12
Upper Levels

Entranceway F in Casa del Fabbro

Description of room:

This was the only entranceway to this street. It was at the north end of the house and led from the street to the north of this insula to front hall 03. Rooms 01 and 02 opened off the west side of this entrance corridor. The doorposts and the walls were plastered (Elia 1934:278), and the pavement was lavapesta (Ling 1997:283).

Condition of volcanic deposit:

The walls of the entranceway were much restored, prohibiting the identification of any possible evidence of disturbance in the form of breaches.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

There is a low masonry seat outside this entranceway, on the west side (figure D.67). The loose finds included two iron keys and other fittings, found a few centimeters above the floor, that may have been fittings for the house door, and a bronze ring, possibly a finger-ring.

Interpretations of room:

According to Olga Elia (1934:278), the seat was for waiting clients. The presence of door keys implies that the occupants were still in residence or at least had not had the time or inclination to lock up their house before fleeing from the eruption.


Room 01 in Casa del Fabbro

Description of room:

This relatively small room was entered through its east side from entranceway F. It was almost completely open along its east side. The walls had a high pink plastered socle to 1.6 m above the pavement with white plaster above. The pavement was of tiles and mortar (Ling 1997:284).

Condition of volcanic deposit:

The west and south walls of this room have breaches.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

This room had a stairway along the north wall with a latrine underneath. A truncated amphora, reportedly with organic contents, was set into a wooden platform in the southeast corner (figure D.68). Two ceramic jugs, a bronze casseruola, a bronze fibula, a hoe, and an axe were recorded from here. No immediate association between these finds is recognizable.

Interpretations of room:

According to Ling (1983a: Figs. 11-12), this room once had an entrance onto the street that had been closed around the middle of the first century AD, making it only accessible from the house (see Elia 1934:278). A low partition wall that juts out at right angles from the west wall postdates the wall plaster. A line of roof tiles set into the floor and running from this partition wall to the south jamb on the east wall was reportedly for flushing the latrine (Ling 1997:152). Elia suggested (1934:278) that the truncated amphora in the southeast corner was for the collection of urine. The other loose finds appear to bear little relation to such activity, particularly the tools. The latter could relate to escape attempts during the final eruption (see room 19 in the Casa del Menandro).


Room 02 in Casa del Fabbro

Description of room:

This room was to the west of entrance corridor F and was entered from the latter through a narrow doorway at the south end of the east wall. The walls were decorated in the Fourth Style, consisting of a dark red socle zone with spattered decoration and central and upper zones with ornamental borders and decorative motifs on a white ground (Ling 1997:284). The pavement was of lavapesta (Ling 1997:284).

Condition of volcanic deposit:

The north and west walls of this room have breaches. The breach in the center of the north wall seems to have been cut from this side.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

A painted recess in the southeast corner might have been a built-in cupboard, but it had no shelves (figure D.69). A bronze hinge found on the floor could have belonged to it or to another container. A small bronze jug, a large ceramic pot, and a bronze mirror were also found in the southeast corner and possibly in this recess. Other items found on the floor of this room included a large ceramic jug, an abbeveratoio, a glass bottle, a hoe, and a bronze fastener. Unprovenanced finds consisted of another abbeveratoio; three glass unguentaria; a ceramic lamp; probably part of another vessel; two spindles and a bone spoon. A number of these may relate to toilet activities.

Interpretations of room:

According to Elia (1934:279), this room was a cubiculum or a cella ostaria (see also Ling 1997:152). The contents seem comparable to those in room M of the Casa di Julius Polybius, with the exception of the hoe. Perhaps the latter belonged with the tools in room 01, suggesting an association with the breaches in the walls and either escape during the final eruption or post-eruption disturbance.


Front hall 03 in Casa del Fabbro

Description of room:

This front hall (figure D.70) was entered from its northwest corner through entranceway F. Rooms 04, 05, and 06 opened off its west side. The walls were covered with a simple white plaster, and the pavement was a continuation of that in entranceway F (Ling 1997:285).

Condition of volcanic deposit:

A large breach penetrated the north wall. 1.7 m above the ground. Any tunneling done at this height would probably have missed many of the objects in this area. The objects found on ground level in the lapilli were apparently undisturbed (GdSc A,VI,7:278).

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

This front hall had a central water-catchment pool (impluvium) furbished in signinum (Ling 1997:284). To the north stood a large rectangular marble table with a masonry support at each end decorated in marble (Ling 1997: Pls. 78-79). The Giornali give confusing locations for four cupboards in this front hall because they refer to the fourth cupboard as "a termine sulla linea dello stipite orientale del tablino" (GdSc A,VI,6:271). This does not make sense. The cupboard must have been against the east wall and in line with the impluvium. The misnumbering of the cupboards or the misnaming of the walls on 5 January 1933 (GdSc A,VI,7:281) contributed to this confusion.

Elia (1934:277 Fig. 7) illustrated two cupboards on the south wall and two on the east wall, which must be correct (see also Ling 1983a:Fig. 2). She referred to three of these cupboards (1, 2, and 4) as arcae and the third one as a true and proper armarium. All the so-called arcae are c. 1.3 m high, 1 m long, and 0.5 to 0.7 m wide, proportions perhaps more akin to a low cupboard than a chest (no heights are given for cupboards II, IV, and V in the Casa di Julius Polybius, but the other dimensions are comparable).

No fittings were reported from cupboard 1, but the sixteen bone hinges (fourteen 0.013 m long and two 0.11 m long) found just inside the east jamb of room 07 could have come from this cupboard. The number and size of these hinges suggest one row from the upright door of a cupboard (S. Mols, conversation with author). (See cupboards in garden cc of the Casa di Julius Polybius [figure D.10 and figure D.11]). Among the fittings from cupboard 2, thirty bone hinges (0.03 to 0.095 m long) were reported. Again, the larger hinges are likely to be from the vertical doors of a cupboard. The description of cupboard 4's two doors is consistent with those of a cupboard. The containers in the southeast area of the front hall might therefore be identified as cupboards rather than strongboxes or arche.

Thus, the furnishings of the front hall probably consisted of two cupboards (1 and 2) against the south wall, two cupboards (3 and 4) and a small chest against the east wall, another chest against the north wall, and a rectangular marble table at the southern end of the impluvium. No finds were reported from the chest against the north wall. The small chest against the east wall, towards the northeast corner, contained a portable brazier or incense burner (Elia 1934:Fig. 15); six large glass flasks and bottles, and three small bottles; the remains of other glass vessels; four ceramic jugs; seven abbeveratoi; part of a set of scales; an iron knife; bronze forceps; a pair of tongs (Elia 1934:Fig. 15), reportedly for picking up hot coals; a bronze ruler; two cylindrial bronze containers; counters, possibly for gaming; and twelve bronze and three silver coins. No finds were reported from cupboard 4. Apart from fittings, the only recorded find from cupboard 3 was a marble mortar. Cupboard 2 had bone decoration and contained gold jewelry (Elia 1934:Fig. 16), one gold and one bronze coin, a bone needle, a bronze instrument, a marble pestle, and a bronze capped pumice stone. A number of finds from the southeast corner, 1.5 to 2 m above the floor, belonged either to cupboard 2 or cupboard 3. They consisted of bone, bronze, and iron fittings; one bronze vase; two abbeveratoi; and one fritillus. Cupboard 1 contained two strigils, a glass bottle, a small glass vase, a small ceramic vase, a bronze lid and vessel handle, a basalt weight, a possible musical instrument, and a cylindrical bronze tube. It might also have contained finds reported from just inside the jamb of room 07. These consisted of the remains of scales (possibly Elia 1934:Fig. 17), two lead counterweights, two bronze basins, and one bronze patera. A bronze casseruola, two glass vessels, and a bronze coin were found in the southwest corner of the front hall, and a lantern was fixed to a nail outside room 05.

Interpretations of room:

Ling originally suggested (1983a:52) that a door in the east wall linking this front hall with room 06 of the Casa del Menandro had been blocked during the early Fourth-Style period (before AD 62) but he subsequently modified this date to shortly before AD 50 (1997:170). According to Elia (1934:279), the wall plaster appears to belong to the last refurbishment of the house, after the door in the east wall had been blocked (see the front hall of the Casa della Venere in Bikini). The cupboards and chest appear to have contained a wide range of objects. They seem to have held a few utilitarian domestic objects (that is, for eating, drinking, cooking, or storage) and more specialized material such as toiletries, a musical instrument, a brazier, jewelry (compare the front halls in the Casa del Sacello Iliaco and the Casa dei Quadretti Teatrali). While certain types of objects seem to have been found only in certain cupboards, each held a mixture. Whether this had been general domestic storage is difficult to ascertain. The coarse plastering, the lack of domestic utensils, and the storage of a marble mortar in an ornately finished cupboard suggest a downgraded front hall with makeshift storage (see the front hall of the Casa della Venere in Bikini).


Room 04 in Casa del Fabbro

Description of room:

This relatively small room was on the west side of front hall 03 and entered from it through a narrow doorway in the middle of the east wall. It had a simple Fourth-Style decoration on a white ground (Elia 1934:279) with plants in the socle zone and fields in the central zone with ornamental borders and griffins and separated by candelabra and ornamental bands in the upper zone. The pavement was of cocciopesto with inset fragments of colored marble (Ling 1997:285).

Condition of volcanic deposit:

The north, south, and east walls of this room were penetrated by breaches.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

The east wall south of the door has a recess (height 1.2 m). Loose finds reported from over 1.5 m above the floor consisted of fittings from a container, probably a cupboard or a chest.

Interpretations of room:

According to Ling (1997:150, 285), this was a cubiculum. The recess was of a suitable width for a bed, although it is rather high. Few finds were recorded from this room. The container had either fallen from the upper floor or was in the recess in the southeast corner.


Room 05 in Casa del Fabbro

Description of room:

Relatively long for this type, room 05 opened off the front hall and was entered through a narrow doorway towards the center of its long east wall. The walls were decorated in the Fourth Style, consisting of a red socle zone with splattered decoration and a central zone of yellow fields with still lifes and cupids and divided by red bands containing candelabra (Ling 1997:285). The pavement was of cocciopesto (Ling 1997:285).

Condition of volcanic deposit:

Breaches in the north and south walls, two at ground level, indicate the continued passage of fugitives or post-eruption intruders already seen in other rooms on this side of the front hall.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

A recess in the east wall south of the doorway is suitable for a wide bed. The finds included the apparent remains of a chest, a bronze jug, a small bronze amphora, one glass unguentarium and the foot of a glass stemmed cup, seven bronze needles, and a bone implement. These finds are conceivably associated with needlework and toilet activities.

Interpretations of room:

According to Elia (1934:280), the decoration of this room was modest, and the recess in the east wall identified it as a cubiculum (see also Ling 1997:152; 285). Ling noted (1997:170) that the Fourth-Style decoration had been repaired. The finds are appropriate for that function, but none of the fittings were those of a bed.


Room 06 in Casa del Fabbro

Description of room:

This very small, narrow room was entered from the west side of front hall 03 through an entranceway consisting of the whole east wall. The walls were covered with fine white plaster, and the pavement was of mortar (Ling 1997:286).

Condition of volcanic deposit:

The north and south walls had breaches that corresponded with those in room 05.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

The north and south walls of this room (Ling 1997: Pl. 80) each had two shelves. One bronze lamp (Elia 1934:Fig. 14), found 1 m above the floor, might have been on one of these shelves or could have fallen from the upper floor. The other finds were on the floor. They consisted of two ceramic amphorae; a bronze lid; a ceramic lid; parts of bronze vessels; another bronze lamp; a bone needle; a bronze boss, possibly from a piece of furniture; and other bronze fragments.

Interpretations of room:

According to Elia (1934:280), this was an apotheca, as evidenced by the fine white plaster and shelf holes on the walls. Ling similarly identified it as a storeroom (1997:152, 285). While little was actually found here, the fragmentary nature of the material and the breaches indicate that it could have had more contents at the time of the eruption but had subsequently been looted. Therefore, this room might have been used for domestic storage at the time of the eruption.


Room 07 in Casa del Fabbro

Description of room:

This wide corridor was completely open on the north side to front hall 03 and on the south side to ambulatory 10. It provided the only access from the front hall to the garden area. The east wall was decorated with a black socle with red and yellow fields above (Elia 1934:280), and the west wall was probably undecorated. The pavement was cocciopesto (Ling 1997:286).

Condition of volcanic deposit:

The walls of this room have been significantly reconstructed since excavation. Thus, it is not possible to identify any breaches made by intruders.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

Sixteen bone hinges were found just inside the east jamb to the front hall, but as mentioned above, they could have belonged to cupboard 1 in the front hall, which was reported to have been on the front hall side of this jamb. The other finds from the same location were probably from this cupboard. Another twelve bronze hinges, at least four from the south entrance, and possibly door fittings were also found in this room. One large marble weight and a ceramic loom weight were found near the northwest jamb. It is unclear whether other finds made near the north entrance were from this room or from the front hall.

Interpretations of room:

Ling referred to this room as a tablinum (1997:150, 286). According to Elia (1934:280), traces of blocked doorways under the plaster of the east wall indicate previous and frequent modifications to this part of the house. The lack of finds here suggests that this room was not being used as anything more than a passageway to the garden and kitchen at the time of the eruption. The poorly preserved painted decoration on one wall and the apparent lack of painted decoration on the other suggest that this had once been a formal area that had been downgraded.


Room 08 in Casa del Fabbro

Description of room:

This room was to the west of room 07 and was entered from it through a narrow doorway in the south end of the east wall. It also had another narrow entranceway in the center of the south wall that led to ambulatory 10 near room 11. The walls were painted in the Third Style, consisting of a black socle zone with plants; a red central zone with limited architectonic elements, central panels, and cupids in the side fields; and a red upper zone with further limited architectonic elements. The ceiling was also painted in the Third Style with floral motifs in octagons, rhomboids, and squares. The pavement was of mortar with limestone chips (Ling 1997:286).

Condition of volcanic deposit:

A breach in the north wall went through to room 06; another was 1 m above the floor near the southwest corner (figure D.71).

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

In the northeast corner were numerous pieces of worked and partially worked bone (Elia 1934:Fig. 21), probably for furniture decoration, and one bone-decorated, iron furniture foot. An iron ladle, two iron wedges for woodcutting (Elia 1934:Fig. 22), and lead lamina were found with these. The latter group seems to have consisted of carpentry or building equipment, and the furniture pieces could have made up part of such a kit. The remains of a chest were reported from the southwest corner. It also contained a number of iron tools: a scraper, a knife, and a palo, and the remains of a bronze measuring rod. One meter above the floor were found further iron tools: another scraper, a spade, and a chisel, as well as two whetstones, all of which were possibly from the same chest and disturbed by intruders. Other unprovenanced finds included two ceramic pots, further bronze measuring rods, an iron ladle, and the remains of four ceramic lamps.

Interpretations of room:

According to Elia (1934:282), this room had been a cubiculum diurnum later converted into a triclinium. Ling argued (1997:152) against such a conversion, however, suggesting that it had received its definitive form as a bedroom at the same time as it was decorated in the late Third Style (1983a:49). The finds in this room suggest that it was downgraded to a more industrial or utilitarian use after this decoration and prior to the eruption.


Room 09 in Casa del Fabbro

Description of room:

Room 9 (figure D.72) was the largest closed room in the house. It was to the east of room 07 and was entered from it through a narrow doorway in the south end of the west wall. The south wall was also open for most of its width onto ambulatory 10. The walls of this room were painted in a Third-Style decoration of a black geometric socle zone, a predella with still lifes, a black central zone with fields separated by thin candelabra and central panels of landscapes, one depicting Hermes and Paris and one showing Icarus, and a black upper zone with architectonic elements. The pavement was of cocciopesto painted red and decorated with white tesserae in a meander pattern in the center of the room. This had borders in the same materials of star patterns at the north end and a rhomboid net pattern at the south end.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphic information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

This room had a short recess in the northwest corner, in or near which the remains of a bed were found (Elia 1934:286). The bed does not seem to have been aligned with the recess, although the presence of an iron pin in the southwest corner suggests its original position had been in the recess. A skeleton was found rolled onto the side of the bed holding a small wooden box. The latter contained a finger ring and seventy-two silver and bronze coins. A second skeleton was found at the foot of the bed with a purse containing twenty-six bronze coins. Between the legs of the second, apparently younger, skeleton were found two bronze jugs. From the southwest corner of the room more bronze vessels (two oinochoe, a small amphora, and a patera; Elia 1934:Fig. 17), measuring rods, and possibly the remains of scales were reported. An iron rod found across the southern entrance was reportedly for a curtain. A rectangle had been cut into the center of the east wall and painted to form a lararium niche.

Interpretations of room:

According to Elia (1934:287), the design of the pavement indicated that this room was a biclinium that had had mobile beds of precious material for parties or for reposing.* Elia also noted that the original arrangement has been modified with a fixed bed against the end wall and assigned the transformations to two phases. She noted the blocking of diverse doors in the west wall before the final decoration, a window in the north wall that cut the central panel of the present decoration, and a lararium niche in the east wall. Fröhlich (1991:79) has shown, however, that neither the window nor the niche need to be dated later than the Third-Style decoration. Ling argued (1997:154) that it was clearly intended as a triclinium and had not been altered.

This is only the second example of a bed in a recess in this sample (see room UU in the Casa di Julius Polybius). The presence of a bed and bronze vessels suggest that this room might have been used for dining but should perhaps be compared with room EE in the Casa di Julius Polybius. The fugitives might have gathered up some of these objects. The bed appears to have been a simple movable slat bed rather than luxury furniture (see those in room HH in the Casa di Julius Polybius). The measuring rods recall the industrial material already noted in room 08. Hence, prior to the eruption, this room had perhaps not been used in a manner intended by its decoration. That the occupants took refuge here in the rear of the house is reminiscent of the situation in the Casa di Julius Polybius.

*Pedar Foss (1994:299) believed that there was room here for three dining couches around the central emblema.


Ambulatory 10 in Casa del Fabbro

Description of room:

This covered area was to the south of rooms 07, 08, and 09 and to the north of garden 12. Room 11 was at its west end. The walls were plastered, and the pavement was of mortar (Ling 1997:287).

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphic information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

A masonry stairway led from the northwest corner of this ambulatory to the upper story. A large iron brazier was found against the western pillar on the south side in front of the kitchen. Near it were a stone hand mill and a stone lid with an iron ring.

A travertine puteal was found set over the cistern head in the eastern intercolumniation on the southern side. In the vicinity were found three marble weights. Near the northwest jamb between rooms 07 and 09, also near the travertine puteal, were found the reputed remains of a bone-decorated chest. Among the thirty bone hinges, at least two were over 0.1 m long, suggesting that this piece of furniture had in fact been an upright cupboard. A guardispigolo was also among the fittings. All but the handful of finds from near this jamb were probably from this cupboard. They included seven bronze jugs, some decorated; two small ceramic vases, one containing money, buttons (or counters), and a bronze bracelet; a fragment of a stone basin; fragments from bronze vessels; at least thirty identifiable tools (Elia 1934:Fig. 22), including saws, picks, hammers, files, shears, knives, chisels, pliers, and more unidentifiable tools; over twenty other implements, including needles, pincers, and spatulas; remains of scales similar to those from a box above room 07 (see below); compasses; pumice stones; numerous pieces of decorated bone; buckles; a necklace; coins; many other fragments of handles; and unidentifiable pieces of metal and bone. Near the entrance to room 07 were similar finds: iron shears; an iron pick; three ceramic vases, one containing animal bones; and numerous iron and bronze fragments that might also have been in this cupboard. A small four-wheeled cart was discovered in the central intercolumniation (figure D.73).

The tools have been considered carpenter's tools (hence the name given to the house), but shears and possibly hammer-headed picks could have been used for masonry, agriculture, or horticulture (see mason's picks from room 43, the Casa del Menandro). In addition, many of the instruments could have been surgical or cosmetic. Hence, this cupboard contained a mixture of domestic vessels and household and possibly trade tools and implements not necessarily for the same activity.

Interpretations of room:

The brazier and hand mill found towards the western end of the ambulatory are probably associated with activity in area 11. The presence of a small cart and the quantity of tools surpassing that required for the general maintenance of this relatively small house and garden might confirm the evidence in room 09 that some type of industry was being carried out, or at least that industrial-type materials had been stored in this part of the house. Cupboards have already been encountered in the ambulatories of the garden areas of the Casa di Julius Polybius and the Casa del Menandro. This was perhaps normal, but the storage of tools of trade in a cupboard with domestic vessels suggests that the tools were not those of workmen refurbishing this house but belonged to the occupants. However, the mixture of apparently cosmetic or surgical instruments with these heavier tools, while possibly the result of frantic packing during the eruption, reflects the same mixed storage seen in the front hall and the general downgrading observed in rooms 08 and 09.


Room 11 in Casa del Fabbro

Description of room:

This area (figure D.74) was to the west end of ambulatory 10 and included space under the stairway (Elia 1934:Fig. 8; Ling 1997: Pl. 81). The walls were plastered, and the pavement was of mortar (Ling 1997:288).

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphic information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

A high bench or hearth, on top of which were three small stoves, had been built in the arch under the stairway against the west wall. A lararium painting was discovered on the south wall. On the ground in front of the hearth were found a bronze cooking pot, a bronze jug, a small ceramic amphora, a blackened pot, a terra sigillata bowl, a ceramic lid, and two ceramic basins. Further unprovenanced vessels were recorded from this room: another blackened ceramic bowl; two ceramic jugs; another bronze cooking pot; and a bronze lid from an elliptical vessel. Many of these vessels appear to be for food preparation and eating.

Interpretations of room:

Elia (1934:281) identified this area as the kitchen (see also Ling 1997:154). The nature of the finds leaves little reason to doubt that it was functioning as such at the time of the eruption. Ling argued (1997:170) that this area received its final form after corridor 53 in the Casa del Menandro had been blocked at its northern end, which he believed had been shortly before AD 50.


Garden 12 in Casa del Fabbro

Description of room:

This area was an open garden. A row of three pillars across its width separated it from ambulatory 10.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

On the east side of the garden, 0.5 m above the ground, the excavators discovered the tunnel for the Sarno canal dug during the seventeenth century, which reportedly destroyed any evidence of planting in the garden (GdSc A,VI,7:287).

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

Built into the south wall was a niche to which a marble herm had reportedly been fixed. In the center of the garden there had been a wooden pergola. In the southwest corner were ceramic amphorae, a jug, and a stone basin and the upper part of a hand-mill, as well as fragments of marble and possibly statue bases.

Interpretations of room:

The fittings indicate that this had once been a formal decorative garden. Elia thought (1934:291,292) that the wooden pergola would originally have covered a stibadium (see also Ling 1997:154). The bases now stored in the southwest corner might have once held statues. The presence of storage and grinding vessels and marble fragments and the relocation of the bases, however, suggest that the garden had also been used for more utilitarian storage and had perhaps no longer been acting in its formal capacity at the time of the eruption.


Upper Levels in Casa del Fabbro

Description of room:

The stairways in room 01 and at the west end of ambulatory 10 indicate that this house had an upper story. Ling observed (1997:155, 288﹣89) evidence of upper-story rooms above rooms 01, 02, 04, and 05.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

Finds from above the front hall were reported to have been from disturbed soil (GdSc A,VI,6:545). The breach, 1.7 m above the pavement in the north wall, could have been related to such disturbance.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

Above the west side of the front hall were found ceramic amphorae, jars, a basin, and other vessels; a glass unguentarium; a lead weight; a bronze lock bolt; and the fragment of a sword. It is difficult to ascertain whether these were originally from the front hall or from upper-story rooms in the surrounding area.

On the south side of room 07, 2 m above the floor, were found bronze and bone fittings from a chest that contained three bronze cups; two bronze casseruole; a bronze fruttiera; three glass flasks (Elia 1934:Fig. 19); two glass unguentaria and a glass pyxis (Elia 1934:Fig. 18); an iron pick; a bronze mirror; bronze fish-spine chains; two bronze bells; twelve bone bosses; two conch shells; much gold and glass jewelry (Elia 1934:Fig. 20); and fourteen silver and nine bronze coins. This collection seems principally to be of valuables. Some of the vessels are conceivably for cosmetic purposes, although others appear to be for serving food and wine. The iron pick is a strange addition.

Another chest, found 1 m above the floor of room 07, contained over fourteen substantial glass flasks; numerous other glass and ceramic vessels (Elia 1934: Figs. 18-19), particularly cups and jars; two glass tubes (Elia 1934:Fig.19); and two mollusc shells. The presence of cups indicates that this collection did not constitute only storage of liquid substances, but it is difficult to ascertain whether it had an industrial or domestic function.

A wooden casket was also found 1 m above the floor of room 07, against the west wall. It was full of further small wooden and bronze boxes and containers, which in turn held many small utensils (Elia 1934:Fig. 14). They have been identified as pincers, lancets, spatulas, spoons, and knife handles, suggesting a toilet or surgical collection (see Crummy 1983, 58﹣64; Ling 1997:162).* One glass flask, a whetstone, and two slabs of slate were also found in this casket. Further finds above room 07 consisted of two small vessels with restricted necks, for small quantities of liquids, one marble and one bronze; a bronze vase, possibly for measuring; the base of another bronze vessel; a small bronze plate; two small glass cups; and a marble slab. The assemblage above room 07 might well point to material concerned with pharmaceutical activity.

Above room 08 were found a number of ceramic storage vessels, remains of iron tubing, iron tools, and a grate. The latter could have been a fixture. Above room 09 were found three feet from a folding stool; bronze and iron fittings, at least some of which might have been from furniture; an iron tripod; bronze and glass vessels (Maiuri 1933:Fig. 183), including a bronze basin and a bronze oinochoe; a bronze tube; part of a bronze lamp-stand; the lid for a bronze lamp; and four ceramic lamps. Above ambulatory 10 and to the south of the room 07 were found four bronze bosses, a forma di pasticceria, a ceramic cup, an iron pick, a scraper, and a bronze base. Four ceramic amphorae and a ceramic lid were also found in this area. Near the eastern pilaster in the ambulatory were found a glass unguentarium, a bone awl, remains of a cylindrical bronze container, and six common lamps.

* In the Notizie degli Scavi one short bronze raschietto of simple fluted lamina was reported from this chest but is not mentioned in the Giornali degli Scavi or in the inventory. Perhaps it was overlooked during the retrieval of so many implements.

Interpretations of room:

The upper story probably consisted of about five small rooms on the west side of the front hall mainly decorated in the Fourth Style and further rooms above rooms 07, 08, and 09 (Elia 1934:292; Ling 1997:150). These were accessible from the stairways in room 01 and at the west end of ambulatory 10. Ling suggested (1983a:54) that these upper-story rooms had been added at the same time as the ground-floor rooms had been redecorated in the Fourth Style. The internal stairways suggest that these rooms were not separate apartments.

The finds from the upper-story areas of the house seem to have been concentrated above rooms 07 and 08 with some activity evident above the west side of the front hall and ambulatory 10. Those above room 07 seem to have been separated into specific containers, one holding precious items, one with mainly glass storage vessels, and one containing cosmetic or surgical implements. Although ascertaining the precise functions of these collections is difficult, their systematic storage suggests that they represented habitual activity.

The material from above room 09 is comparable to that in room A' in the Casa di Julius Polybius. It is tempting to associate the bronze basin and jug with toilet activities but this is by no means a certainty. Finding an iron tripod and only part of a lamp-stand in this area is curious. Upstairs cooking or perhaps heating might have occurred if the house was divided into separate living establishments. The similarity between the objects in the box against the west wall above room 07 and some of those in the cupboard below in ambulatory 10 has already been noted, however. Hence, they might have belonged to the same occupancy as that of the ground floor, which from the evident downgrading in rooms 07, 08, and 09 must postdate that intended by the latter's decoration. The relationship between this occupancy and the Fourth-Style decoration in this upper story and in rooms along the west side of the front hall is unknown. The use of these rooms is uncertain (Ling 1997:288﹣89)