August 24 - Today marks the 1,942nd anniversary of the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius.
On this day in 79 AD, tragedy struck when the volcano Vesuvius erupted, causing death and destruction in the Roman cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum. Contrary to popular belief, Vesuvius did not produce any lava during the eruption (and had there been lava, Pompeii would have been completely destroyed). Instead, ash and noxious gases escaped from the volcano, and many were killed by suffocation and the heat of the blasts. Both cities were covered under a layer of ash and mud, preserving them exactly as they were at the time of the eruption, giving us unique insight into a Roman city in the first century AD.
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