PATRICK LANDMANN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PATRICK LANDMANN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Burnt plant seeds from Pompeii. Plants used by the Romans to prepare aromatic oils and perfumes included roses, lilies, myrtle, violets, hyacinths and irises. These were mixed with olive oil and grape juices. Other ingredients included herbs such as dill, basil and thyme. Burnt plant material, and a wide range of perfume bottles, were found in Pompeii in what is called the House of the Perfumer. Located in the Bay of Naples, Italy, this city was ruined and buried during an eruption of the volcano Vesuvius in 79 AD. The city was rediscovered and excavated in the 18th and 19th centuries, revealing much about the Roman way of life.
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