3.B.f - Gardens and the water

Only in the Vesuvian area it has been possible to determine what plants were used, how they were grown and what function they served. Medicinal plants, flowers used to make wreaths for banquets, and fruit trees co-existed with hedges of geometric design created by masters of the ars topiaria (the garden art).

We can hardly imagine a beautiful garden without water. And in fact, fragments of valves, water cocks and branch boxes bear witness to the presence of complex hydraulic systems that kept the plants flourishing.

From the very special case of Pompeii, we know how gardens were furnished: sculptures in bronze or marble used as fountains and basins for collecting water attest to the encounter between nature and technology.

  Statuette of a lion   Drainpipe with leonine protome   Labrum   Labrum   Fountain mouth   Mosaic fountain

Plumbing systems in Vesuvian houses

The houses of Pompeii were equipped with efficient plumbing systems, which also supplied water for the garden fountains.

Excavations have brought to light many components of these systems: pipes, valves, siphons, cups, separators, etc. The shapes and sizes of these devices were precisely calculated on the basis of established modules, as reported in De aquaeductibus urbis Romae, written by Frontinus near the end of the 1st century A.D.

  Cup   Cup   Separator   Water-pipe   Siphon   Pump component   Distribution tank   Water valve   Water valve   Water valve   Water valve   Drainpipe

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