By Dr Joanne Berry
Last updated 2011-02-17
This fresco from the House of the Vettii depicts a carpenter using a hammer and chisel to carve notches in a piece of wood. Other woodworking tools lie on the ground.
This wall-painting is rare evidence of a craft that must have had an important role to play in the ancient city (particularly so in Pompeii, after the devastating earthquake that shook the town in AD 62), yet which normally leaves little trace in the archaeological record. In general, we know much more about crafts that needed large-scale equipment - such as milling, baking, fulling (cleaning cloth), dying, and tanning. Around 200 workshops of different kinds so far have been identified in Pompeii.
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