National Archaeological Museum of Naples, Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli

Farnese Hercules, c. 3rd century

Hercules from Baths of Caracalla, c. 3rd century CE

Oh hello.  Is winter over yet?  Is it time to come out of hibernation?  Here we are.  Let’s do this Naples thing!  Our first official day in Naples was spent at the National Archaeological Museum of Naples.  It houses artifacts from Pompeii and Herculaneum and several Roman antiquities.  Being able to see bronzes and mosaics rescued from Pompeii before visiting there emphasized its glory once we got there later in the trip.  As we walked through the rooms of the museum reveling in the collection it was clear that this was the most important archaeological museum in Italy.  The Egyptian collection was not open since it was August and according to Cadillac only Americans work hard.  No matter.

There are plenty of wonderful things to see like our handsome friend above.  Hercules is a third century CE copy of a Greek fourth century BCE original.  He originally adorned the Baths of Caracalla in Rome.  At the opposite end of the room stands the Farnese Bull another Roman copy that was excavated from the Baths of Caracalla.

Bull from Baths of Caracalla, 3rd century CE

Bull from Baths of Caracalla, 3rd century CE

In addition to the Roman marbles and treasures from Pompeii there is a Secret Room full of flying penises, couples in compromising positions and other erotic items.  You may laugh nervously but it’s interesting to see how creative the artists were.

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