Bacchus and Vesuvius - Pompeii, House of the Centenary
The ancient inhabitants of the Vesuvian plain lived in a different environment from today's, one which was changed significantly by the eruption in 79 AD. Before that time Vesuvius had a single peak, and was much taller, while the River Sarno was navigable and brimming with fish and flowed not far from the city walls. The coastline was much farther back; the villas of ancient Stabia overlooked the sea. The ground was covered with thick, wild vegetation that varied according to altitude. These were interspersed with cultivated fields, vineyards and orchards. Pompeii stood upon a rocky spur: those who lived in this territory took most of what they needed from the surrounding environment.