SHEILA TERRY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SHEILA TERRY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Vesuvius erupting. Historical artwork of the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 1872. The explosive eruption culminated in the collapse of the summit cone. Both the towns of San Sebastiano and Massa were destroyed, and 20 medical students hiking at the time were killed. The eruption was recorded by vulcanologist, Luigi Palmieri, who had recently invented the seismograph. Vesuvius dominates the Bay of Naples in southern Italy. Most famously erupting in 79AD, which destroyed the Roman town of Pompeii, it has continued to remain active. The last major eruption occurred in 1944, destroying the same two towns.
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