Monday, June 20, 2011

Ancient Excrement Excavation Provides Clues To Rich Roman Diet

When southern Italy's Mount Vesuvius erupted in 79 AD, it preserved the buildings, monuments and mosaics of Roman cities Pompeii and Herculaneum forever. But not everything in the lava's path was quite so picturesque. Herculaneum's pristine cobblestone streets concealed a relatively sophisticated sewer system, which led from resident's homes to huge underground septic tanks.

Their contents provide our solidest evidence of what typical Romans ate. For years, teams of archeologists have been sifting through literally tons of ancient excrement to try and find out the nitty-gritty details of the Roman diet.

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