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The House of the Ephebe

Regio I   Insula 7.9

This residential complex is situated in a side street of Via dell'Abbondanza, not far from the House of Menander, and actually comprises three buildings converted into one. It derives its name from the bronze statue of an Ephebe which was found in the house and was used to support oil-lamps needed to light the Triclinium couches during evening receptions.

Access to the house was through the second entrance-door and the Tuscan Atrium which was flanked to the right by the family's living quarters and, on the left, by the reception rooms and areas devoted to leisure activities and sport. Here, in addition to a few living-rooms, we find a large open Triclinium which was once surrounded by a shaded garden with a fountain whose jets were forced through walls decorated with several wild animals and Nile landscapes. Between the Atrium and the garden was a small Triclinium with plant decorations in the middle of the floor and a still-life with a basket full of fish on the rear wall.

A larger Triclinium is situated opposite this wall. The section of the room which is not occupied by the couches has an extraordinary Mosaic floor made from valuable marble and glass paste tiles which form a magnificent composition of flowers set within a fantastic scene of buildings depicted in perspective.

Summer triclinium
The painted sign still visible on the facade
The House of the Ephebe. The summer triclinium
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