Information concerning the rooms in Casa di Stallius Eros

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Entranceway a
Front hall b
Room 01
Room 02
Room 03
Room 04
Room 05
Room 06
Corridor e
Room 07
Garden 13
Corridor f
Stairway g
Room 08
Room 09
Room 10
Room 11
Room 12
Entrance I 6, 14
Upper Levels

Entranceway a in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This was the main entranceway to the house from the street leading to front hall b. The walls were plastered, and the pavement was coarse cocciopesto.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

A number of iron bosses and other door fittings were found in the entranceway, no doubt belonging to the house door because they appear generally too large for fittings.

Interpretations of room:

The presence of a bossed front door at the time of the eruption suggests that this house might not have actually been completely gutted for storage of sand and building rubble after the AD 62 earthquake (see Maiuri 1929:430).


Front hall b in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This front hall (figure D.93) was entered from the south through entranceway a. Rooms 01 and 02 opened off its south side, corridor d' and room 04 off the west side, and corridor e and rooms 05 and 06 off the north side. The walls were furbished with coarse plaster, and the pavement was of cocciopesto.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

This area had reportedly been filled with demolition material to 1.5 m above the floor (Maiuri 1929:430). On top of this material were undisturbed layers of lapilli and ash.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

This front hall had a central water-catchment pool (impluvium) with a tufa border restored in cocciopesto decorated with white tesserae in a rhomboid net pattern. There was a semicircular podium in the southwest corner. All the loose finds were from the demolition material. They included a terra-cotta gargoyle from the compluvium, small glass vessels, fragments of what may have been furniture or casket fittings, a needle, a lamp, and a number of coins.

Interpretations of room:

Maiuri identified the semicircular platform as a "rustic" hearth, an unusual fixture for a front hall(1929:432).* The finds are consistent with those from other upper stories (for example, room A' in the Casa di Julius Polybius, House I 10,8, and the Casa dei Quadretti Teatrali) and were possibly from upper levels of the volcanic deposit. The discovery of a terra-cotta gargoyle in the demolition material suggests that the compluvium had been mixed in with the rubble. It is therefore possible that this rubble was in fact from the collapse of the front hall and surrounding area (with upper-story artifacts mixed in) rather than imported building rubble. The entire front hall seems to have been filled with the collapse of this and the surrounding rooms either before or in the early stages of the final eruption. Whether this rubble was from the house itself or brought in from elsewhere, it would have made the front hall impassable. The lack of any trace of front hall furnishings, as found in other houses, could be used to argue that the front hall had been converted into a builders' yard (Maiuri 1929:430). It does, however, indicate that no furniture was standing in the front hall at the time of the collapse or the introduction of the rubble (see the front halls of the Casa del Menandro, Casa di Julius Polybius, and Casa degli Amanti). The podium built in the southwest corner suggests that the function of the front hall had already changed and downgraded before it had been filled with rubble. The lack of wall decoration is reminiscent of the front halls in the Casa di Julius Polybius, the Casa del Fabbro, and House I 10,8.

*In this sample the only other house with an identified cooking fixture in the front hall was House I 6,8-9, which seems to have been converted for commercial activities. This fixture is therefore not common in this area and in these types of houses. Maiuri's description of it as "rustic" implies that it was a utilitarian fixture in what is traditionally believed to have been a formal and public area of the house. Foss's proposal (1994:234) that this could not represent possible downgrading contradicts his own argument that ideally cooking smells should be kept away from public areas and through-routes.


Room 01 in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This was a small room to the west of entranceway a entered from front hall b through a narrow doorway in the east end of the north wall. The walls were decorated with a high yellow socle with white plaster above (Maiuri 1929:431). The pavement was probably cocciopesto.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

The only loose find in this room was a coin in the lapilli that may have fallen from the rooms above.

Interpretations of room:

From the lack of furnishings, it had conceivably been out of use at the time of the eruption.


Room 02 in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This room was to the east of entranceway a and was entered from front hall b through a narrow doorway in the west end of the north wall. The wall decoration consisted of a pink socle painted yellow with coarse plaster above. The pavement was of lime mortar.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

This room had an understair cupboard painted yellow and red against the west wall and a recess in the northeast corner of the north wall. The loose finds consisted of bronze and iron bosses, probably door fittings.

Interpretations of room:

According to Maiuri, this room had been simply decorated at the same time as the stairway and upper story had been constructed (1929:431). At the time of excavation, an iron grill (0.5 m x 0.6 m) was still in place in the window in the south wall, 2 m above the ground (GdSc A,VI,6:464). The dearth of furnishings could indicate that this room had also gone out of use prior to the final eruption.


Room 03 in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This was a large area in the southwest corner of the house. It had been accessible via a long corridor to the north, but this had been out of use at the time of the eruption (Maiuri 1929:432). At that time it was inaccessible from both the street or this house. Its walls were furbished with a red socle zone. There is no evidence or record of a pavement.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

There was a semicircular niche in the east wall. The room contained building material, amongst which were found a number of small glass and ceramic vessels, an implement possibly for spinning or needlework, and two coins.

Interpretations of room:

According to Maiuri, this, the most spacious room in the house, had been adapted into a shop and then sealed off after the earthquake of "AD 63 [sic]" (1929:432). At the time of the eruption, it was inaccessible. According to the Giornali degli Scavi (A,VI,6:475), the building material in this room was from adjacent houses that were being reconstructed. As in the front hall, however, this room also contained finds of types likely to have fallen from the upper floor. These remains were therefore likely to have also been from the collapse of this house that had occurred when there had still been at least the remains of habitation activity upstairs. The relationship between this room's inaccessibility and the building material is unclear.


Room 04 in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This was a large room on the west side of front hall b entered from the latter through two narrow doorways in the east wall, one in the south end and one in the center. All the walls in this room were undecorated (Maiuri 1929:432). The pavement was of cocciopesto with white tesserae forming a large rosette of white petals surrounded by ivy and a rhomboid net pattern.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

The objects from this room were found in rubble or lapilli. As in room 03 and in the front hall, they consisted of small luxury or toilet items and five coins.*

Interpretations of room:

A similar conclusion as that for room 03 and the front hall might be drawn from the discovery of small, easily lost objects in this room.

* Maiuri's plan (1929:432, Fig. 44) has a south wall to this room that appears to have a recess in the west end. There is no evidence of such a wall today.


Room 05 in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This was a relatively small room in the northeast corner of front hall b entered from the latter through a narrow doorway in the west end of the south wall. The wall decoration consisted of the remains of a First-Style cornice (PPM I:403) and a Fourth-Style reconstruction (PPP I:39), consisting of a violet socle zone with yellow and green splashes and white central and upper zones with red quadrants. The pavement was cocciopesto.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

The only recorded find in this room was a pile of sand.

Interpretations of room:

The remains of the First-Style decoration in this room indicated to Maiuri that this house was once more "nobile e signorile" (1929:432). To him, the sand indicated that the house was being used for the storage of building material (1929:430). If so, it must have been utilized as such before the front hall collapsed and made such material inaccessible. If, as Maiuri argued, the house had collapsed prior to the final eruption, then the use of this house for sand storage must likewise have ceased prior to the final eruption.


Room 06 in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This room was on the north side of front hall b and was fully open onto the latter. Its north side was also largely open onto garden 13. No decoration was found on the walls at the time of excavation (GdSc A,VI,6:476). The pavement was in cocciopesto delineated with white tesserae in the form of a carpet with a red pattern of meander in a field of lines of tesserae with rhomboids at the threshold (PPM I:404﹣5).

Condition of volcanic deposit:

A clean deposit of lapilli found in this room implies that it had been undisturbed after the eruption (figure D. 94).

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

No finds were reported.

Interpretations of room:

The lack of decoration is comparable to room 07 of the Casa del Fabbro and room 06 in the Casa dei Quadretti Teatrali. As in room 05, the pavement indicates that the house had once been lavishly decorated (Maiuri 1929:432). The lack of finds implies that it may have been out of use at the time of the eruption. If the rubble in front of this room in the front hall had been there prior to the eruption, then this room would have been blocked off, at least on the south side.


Corridor e in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This corridor was on the northwest corner of front hall b and led from it to garden 13. There is no record or evidence of wall decoration. The pavement was of cocciopesto.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

No finds were reported.

Interpretations of room:


Room 07 in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This room was to the west of corridor e and was entered from the latter through a narrow doorway in the center of the east wall. The walls were decorated with architectural elements and panels (Della Corte 1929:432). The pavement was in cocciopesto delineated and decorated with white tesserae in a carpet pattern with a meander border and a lattice of rosettes.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

There was a pile of lime in the northwest corner of this room.

Interpretations of room:

Remains of architectural decoration indicate that this room, like rooms 05 and 06, had also once been lavishly decorated (Maiuri 1929:432). Like room 05, it had later been used to store renovation material, but this must have been before the front of the house had been filled with building rubble or had collapsed, because afterwards it would have been inaccessible.


Garden 13 in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This garden was at the north end of the house and entered either from corridor e or from room 06. Corridor f led from its west side, and rooms 11 and 12 opened off its east side. The garden area was decorated with Fourth-Style garden scenes, consisting of various trees and other plants and sphinxes on pedestals, above a lattice socle zone interspersed with flowers (Maiuri 1929: Fig. 45).

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

This area had a niche, possibly a lararium, in the southeast corner and a wooden stairway (with the first three steps in masonry) leading to the upper story along the west wall. A terra-cotta puteal was found in the northeast corner. The only loose find was a bronze seal inscribed "ATS+ERO" (Maiuri 1929:Figs. 46﹣7).

Interpretations of room:

According to Maiuri (1929:434), the podium that had originally served as a garden border had later been replaced with a masonry channel to carry excess rainwater from the upper story into the cistern hole in corridor f. The installation of a wooden stairway along the west wall might also have transformed the garden. This transformation seems to have been after its Fourth-Style decoration (PPP I:39) and at the time when the house had received an upper story or at least more access to the upper floor. After this transformation, the house may have been further disrupted, which had entailed sealing off and abandoning this area. The terra-cotta puteal must have remained in place, similar to that in the ruined garden of the Casa dei Quadretti Teatrali.


Corridor f in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This corridor led from the west end of garden 13 towards the west wall of the house. Rooms 08 and 09 opened off its north side and room 10 off its south side. There is no record or evidence of any wall decoration or pavement.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

This corridor had a downpipe from the upper story leading to a cistern hole (Maiuri 1929:434).

Interpretations of room:

The downpipe and cistern hole could conceivably have belonged to the same period as the transformation of the garden.


Stairway g in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

According to Maiuri (1929:433), this had been an entrance from the street to the west of this house, which had a wooden stairway. There is no evidence or record of decoration or pavement.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

No loose finds were reported.

Interpretations of room:

Maiuri observed that this entrance gave access to an upper story that must have been separate. He concluded that the stairway and access to the street had been abandoned after the earthquake of "AD 63 [sic]," when the entrance to the street had been blocked. This stairway may have been replaced by that in garden 13.


Room 08 in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This room was to the west of garden 13 on the north side of corridor f. It was accessible from the latter through a narrow doorway at the east end of the south wall. The walls were furbished with a pink socle, but the pavement was destroyed (GdSc A,VI,.6:477).

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

This room had a water pipe and contained two terra-cotta loom weights and a coin.

Interpretations of room:

The presence of loom weights hints at the presence of a loom. If so, either it had been stored here or weaving had once been carried out in this room.


Room 09 in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This room was in the northwest corner of the house and was accessible from the north side of corridor f through a narrow doorway at the east end of the south wall. The walls were reportedly "rustic" (GdSc A,VI,6:479), and there is no record or evidence of the pavement.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

The west wall has a breach in the northwest corner.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

A small ceramic vessel, fragments of architectural decoration, and two possible spinning implements were reported from this room.

Interpretations of room:

The spinning equipment may have been connected with the possible evidence of weaving in the adjacent room 08. The architectural finds are unlikely to have furnished this small room and therefore may have been stored here. Such objects would have been stored in this room only if the intention had been to use them in the repair of the house or if they had been salvaged items. If, as Maiuri argued, this house had been a builders' supply yard, then finding such artifacts here would not be surprising. If they were to have been used in the renovation of the collapse in the front hall of this house, they must have been stored here after the event. This would, however, mean that the rubble in the front hall was not in fact evidence that it had been transformed into a builder's yard and that the house had not been abandoned to the storage of building and demolition material. If, on the other hand, they predated the filling of the front hall with rubble, an earlier phase of destruction and storage for subsequent repair must have occurred.


Room 10 in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This room was on the south side of corridor f opposite room 09. It was accessible from this corridor through a narrow doorway in the east end of the north wall. The walls were unadorned, and the pavement was destroyed (GdSc A,VI,6:479).

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

This room contained a latrine.

Interpretations of room:

None.


Room 11 in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This room was to the east of garden 13 and was accessible from it through a narrow doorway in the north end of the west wall. At the time of the eruption the walls were undecorated (GdSc A,VI,6:477), but with remnants of decoration on the south wall. The pavement was of cocciopesto.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No breaches in this room were lower than 2 m above the floor.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

No finds were reported.

Interpretations of room:

According to Maiuri (1929:434), this room had been completely rustic. The traces of painted decoration were presumably a decoration that had already been old at the time of the eruption. Like the other small rooms around the front hall, this room may also have been empty at the time of the eruption.


Room 12 in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This was a largely L-shaped room in the northeast corner of the house. It was entered from garden 13 through a quite wide doorway in the west wall. The walls were reportedly rustic (GdSc A,VI,6:479), and there is no record or evidence of a pavement.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

This room had a masonry stairway in the northern end and a latrine in the southeast corner. An iron hinge, probably a door fitting, and a bronze coin were found here.

Interpretations of room:

According to Maiuri (1929:434), the stairway gave access to the upper story. The lack of movable finds again implies the abandonment of this room.


Entrance I 6, 14 in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

This is an entranceway from the street to the south of this insula, which led directly to the upper story. The walls had been plastered.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

A stairway took up this entire space.

Interpretations of room:

According to Maiuri (1929:431) this stairway had been opened up in the last building phase and had led to upper-story rooms that projected into the south side of the street.


Upper Levels in Casa di Stallius Eros

Description of room:

Evidence exists for four stairways in this house (three at the rear of the house and one at the front) leading to the upper story. Those in garden 13 and room 12 conceivably led to rooms that were connected to the ground-floor house, while that from entrance I 6,14 and possibly stairway g seem to have led to separate establishments.

Condition of volcanic deposit:

No stratigraphical information.

Summary of Finds and Fixtures Distribution:

Finds reported from the upper levels of the volcanic deposit included door fittings, a coin, and a lamp from above entrance I 6,14 and three amphorae. It has been argued that a number of the finds from the demolition material in other parts of the house may have fallen from the upper floor. The majority were small vessels, coins, lamps, or related to spinning and weaving.

Interpretations of room:

These finds are comparable to those in the upper stories of other houses (for example, in the Casa di Julius Polybius and House I 6,8-9). It is conceivable that rooms in the upper story of the northwest area of the house, which had once had a separate entrance through entranceway g, had later been incorporated into the house and were accessible from the stairway in garden 13.