Sponsored by: Gonzaga University
Dr. Pedar Foss (Depauw University)
The text of Pliny’s letters for the eruption of Vesuvius may give one date, but what if that date is wrong? How else could we check? This talk follows on the lecture about manuscript and inscriptional evidence to look at the archaeological data for climate, sunlight, coinage, clothing worn by the victims, braziers and carpets in houses, wind direction; and the archaeobotanical evidence for the grape and olive harvest, fresh fruit such as peaches and pears, pomegranates, dried fruit like figs and dates, seeds and nuts, berries and trees, vegetables, hay, hemp, and herbs. What reasonably constitutes sufficiently convincing evidence at the datum level, and a preponderance of evidence in the aggregate? When do we know when we have enough evidence to be sure?