The Roman villas in marina di Puolo
Even today there are remarkable archaeological remains that can be seen in three different areas of the coast adjacent to Marina di Puolo, and are found in them, with certainty, the remains of three Roman villas dating back to the I-II century AD.
Following the coast of Massa Lubrense towards Sorrento, the first of these three groups we find the ruins of the Punta del Capo di Massa, immediately before the village of Puolo; the second on the small promontory of Calcarella, immediately after the aforementioned Marina; the third on the Punta del Capo di Sorrento.
As for the villa located on Calcarella, although it remained a few remnants, it had to coincide with the villa belonged to Pollio Felice, a distinguished member of a noble family of Pozzuoli. The articulation of such a complex is also apparent from the descriptions that it makes the poet Statius. He celebrates the lovely home of Pollio with two poems of his Silvae: Villa Surrentina Chickens Felicis (describing the villa and its superb buildings) and Hercules Surrentinus Chickens Felicis (where is the new temple erected to Hercules in the same Pollio mansion). Probably the building was divided into two floors, where they were at two rows of rooms separated by a corridor: one group was oriented towards the ground, while the other looked at the sea. Quest ‘
Always from the testimony of Statius is obtained that the building had to have a plant of 20 mt. 10 m., And the room’s owner was decorated by a wall mosaic in polychrome marble.
Of the third house, which is located on the promontory of Capo di Sorrento there are the ruins on the rocks in front of the so-called “Bath of the Queen Giovanna”.
Other ruins, however, show that it also extended to the eastern slope of Capo di Sorrento. What little remains of the stucco makes it desirable dating back to the Kingdom of Claudius (41-54 d. C.).
The only scenic element, the tower at the bottom of a long retaining wall 70 m., Which probably carried a porch of equal length, we find already in the villa of Pisoni in Herculaneum, and derives, probably, from the military .
The entire complex ruins are spread over an area of about 30,000 square meters. The villa is divided in domus and seaside villa, with its annexes.
The importance of the domus, which occupies the top of the promontory, is testified by the remains of retaining walls and three groups of cisterns in the slope. The villa at sea, however, is placed on the tip of the promontory, almost like on an island, separate com? Is from the earth by a natural basin, the so-called “Bath of the Queen Giovanna”.
A set of steps, hallways, stairs and terraces is the link between the domus and the villa to the sea, passing over the two narrow strips of land that unite, turning around the pelvis, the Cape Point to the back ground.
The domus is almost completely destroyed, while the seaside villa are still sufficient to be able to ideally reconstruct ruins.
The garden was developed, from the house to the sea, with a series of ramps and terraces on the northern slopes of the headland, and it was closed downstream from a beautiful portico.
More towards the sea there is also a tank five chambers, intercom, whose plant has the shape of an irregular pentagon. The walls are in opus reticulatum, while the doors of the arches are in brick. In the modern age a huge wall has a terrace above the reservoir area.
The house at sea occupies the end of the promontory and is constituted by a single system formed by the central building to which rest secondary bodies with terraces, steps and landings.
The villa was accessible both by land and by sea. The current downhill from Massa road follows, at least in part, the ancient road.
On the Gulf of Naples, however, the complex was enjoyed by two points: one from the open sea and one from? Inside of the basin. Access is across the narrow natural opening in the rock that divides the area from the open sea, passing under the? Span and thus arrive at the small pier.
Above the opening of natural it was built a bridge between the domus and the villa to the sea. On it it stood also a wonderful terrace and a covered walkway connecting the house to the sea. The south and west sides of the latter environment are almost completely destroyed. In the east side are visible six rooms with a barrel vault having terracing function. Originally they were to be covered with stucco of which today there are still traces. Four other rooms opening to the outside claimed two more terraces going around to the north side of the house. On this side there are four rooms with decorated ceilings and mosaic floor.
Of particular interest are to be five chambers, constituting a cesspool sewage system with its sloping towards the west. Even today it is evident clearly how the structure of the work was divided in such a way as to allow easy inspection of the faecal conduit and to avoid that the sewage collected in the septic tank for the purpose of agricultural fertilization, could pollute the marine waters.
Continuing west you meet other six large rooms, used as warehouses, supporting as many luxurious overlying environments. Several ramps and stairs allow access from this side to the stately rooms of the upper floor. Of the latter, only after the last recovery operation, you can be read with a good approximation the implant. Finally, note two other tanks are located on the hillside of two million liters capacity each. One of these, well preserved, is currently used for agricultural irrigation.
The entire complex architectural system seems to make the most of the beauty of the landscape with certain structural gimmicks, divergent walls, large windows, which claim maximum use of the panorama. Everything, structure and decoration, was functional to luxuria and otium. Even the gray areas, consisting of hanging gardens and pergolas overshadowing the sunny paths, reflecting the desire to live well as the maximum expression of luxury.
How to reach marina di Puolo
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Italian businessman, operating in the tourism sector in Sorrento form more than 15 years, owner of Di Nocera Service and Sorrento Luggage.
Passionate about soccer and sailing, he loves to go around the Amalfi Coast by his motorbike.
He also writes articles about news, tips and tour ideas on this blog!