Vesuvius volcano

The 4,203-feet tall Mount Vesuvius, located in southern Italy near on the Gulf of Naples, is the only active volcano in mainland Europe. Mount Vesuvius was regarded by the Romans to be devoted to Hercules. It is one of the volcanoes which form the Campanian volcanic arc consisting of various active, extinct and dormant volcanoes in Italy’s Campania region.

Key Points

  • Considered one among the most dangerous volcanoes in the world, it has been classified as ‘Complex volcano’ as it consists of a complex of two or more vents and made explosive eruptions. It has erupted more than 50 times.
  • The Italian Culture Ministry recently announced the discovery of well-preserved remains of two men, who died during the volcanic eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD.
  • The archeologists have preserved the teeth and bones of the discovered remains.
  • The volcano’s last serious eruption was in 1944 during World War II, which lasted for two weeks and killed around 12 Italians.

Volcanic Eruption of 79 AD

Two sister cities of the Roman empire era- Pompeii and Herculaneum were destroyed and buried during a massive eruption of Vesuvius in 79 A.D, killing around 16000 people. The volcano flowed out a cloud of super-heated tephra and gases up to a height of 33 km, molten rock, pulverized pumice and hot ash at 1.5 million tons per second. A major earthquake in the city in 63 AD was like a warning for the eruption to come. Archaeological Areas of Pompei, Herculaneum, and Torre Annunziata are UNESCO World Heritage Sites now.


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