Tortoise and Egg Discovered at Pompeii

Pompeii Tortoise EggROME, ITALY—BBC News reports that excavations in an area of Pompeii destroyed by an earthquake in A.D. 62 have revealed the remains of a tortoise and her egg. Scientists think the tortoise had burrowed under the rubble of a shop to lay her eggs when she died in the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in A.D. 79. Mark Robinson of Oxford University said it is possible that the reptile had been a pet that wandered away from home into the damaged part of the city, but it is more likely that she came from the nearby countryside. “The whole city was a construction site, and evidently some spaces were so unused that wild animals could roam, enter and try to lay their eggs,” added Gabriel Zuchtriegel, general director of the Archaeological Park of Pompeii. To read about a nearly intact chariot found in a villa just north of Pompeii, go to “A Ride Through the Countryside.”


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