Bodies of man and his slave unearthed from ashes at Pompeii

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The casts of what are believed to have been a rich man and his male slave fleeing the volcanic eruption of Vesuvius nearly 2,000 years ago, are seen in what was an elegant villa on the outskirts of the ancient Roman city of Pompeii destroyed by the eruption in 79 A.D., where they were discovered during recents excavations, Pompeii archaeological park officials said Saturday, Nov. 21, 2020. (AP)
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This undated photo handout on November 21, 2020 by the Pompeii Archaeological Park shows a cast of one of the bodies of two men, a 40-year-old master and his young slave, after they were found during recent excavations of a Villa in Civita Giuliana in the outskirts of Pompeii, as Park officials said conditions were optimal to get casts of the victims, following the technique perfected in 1863 by Giuseppe Fiorelli. (AFP)
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This undated photo handout on November 21, 2020 by the Pompeii Archaeological Park shows casts of the bodies of two men, a 40-year-old master and his young slave, after they were found during recent excavations of a Villa in Civita Giuliana in the outskirts of Pompeii, as Park officials said conditions were optimal to get casts of the victims, following the technique perfected in 1863 by Giuseppe Fiorelli. (AFP)
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Updated 22 November 2020

Bodies of man and his slave unearthed from ashes at Pompeii

  • Pompeii officials said the men apparently escaped the initial fall of ash from Mount Vesuvius then succumbed to a powerful volcanic blast that took place the next morning

ROME: Skeletal remains of what are believed to have been a rich man and his male slave attempting to escape death from the eruption of Mount Vesuvius nearly 2,000 years ago have been discovered in Pompeii, officials at the archaeological park in Italy said Saturday.
Parts of the skulls and bones of the two men were found during excavation of the ruins from what was once an elegant villa with a panoramic view of the Mediterranean Sea on the outskirts of the ancient Roman city destroyed by the volcano eruption in 79 A.D. It’s the same area where a stable with the remains of three harnessed horses were excavated in 2017.
Pompeii officials said the men apparently escaped the initial fall of ash from Mount Vesuvius then succumbed to a powerful volcanic blast that took place the next morning. The later blast “apparently invaded the area from many points, surrounding and burying the victims in ash,” Pompeii officials said in a statement.
The remains of the two victims, lying next to each other on their backs, were found in a layer of gray ash at least 2 meters (6.5 feet) deep, they said.
As has been done when other remains have been discovered at the Pompeii site, archaeologists poured liquid chalk into the cavities, or void, left by the decaying bodies in the ash and pumice that rained down from the volcano near modern-day Naples and demolished the upper levels of the villa.
The technique, pioneered in the 1800s, gives the image not only of the shape and position of the victims in the throes of death, but makes the remains “seem like statues,” said Massimo Osanna, an archaeologist who is director general of the archaeological park operated under the jurisdiction of the Italian Culture Ministry.
Judging by cranial bones and teeth, one of the men was young, likely aged 18 to 25, with a spinal column with compressed discs. That finding led archaeologists to hypothesize that he was a young man who did manual labor, like that of a slave.
The other man had a robust bone structure, especially in his chest area, and died with his hands on his chest and his legs bent and spread apart. He was estimated to have been 30- to 40-years-old, Pompeii officials said. Fragments of white paint were found near the man’s face, probably remnants of a collapsed upper wall, the officials said.
Both skeletons were found in a side room along an underground corridor, or passageway, known in ancient Roman times as a cryptoporticus, which led to to the upper level of the villa.
“The victims were probably looking for shelter in the cryptoporticus, in this underground space, where they thought they were better protected,” said Osanna.
Instead, on the morning of Oct. 25, 79 A.D., a “blazing cloud (of volcanic material) arrived in Pompeii and...killed anyone it encountered on its way,” Osanna said.
Based on the impression of fabric folds left in the ash layer, it appeared the younger man was wearing a short, pleated tunic, possibly of wool. The older victim, in addition to wearing a tunic, appeared to have had a mantle over his left shoulder.
Mount Vesuvius remans an active volcano. While excavations continue at the site near Naples, tourists are currently barred from the archaeological park under national anti-COVID-19 measures.


Ski Dubai crowned world’s best indoor resort in prestigious industry awards

Updated 20 November 2020

Ski Dubai crowned world’s best indoor resort in prestigious industry awards

  • Ski Dubai wins ‘World’s Best Indoor Ski Resort’ award for fifth consecutive year
  • The winner was announced after receiving the highest number of votes from ski industry professionals and consumers

DUBAI: For the fifth year in a row, Ski Dubai has been crowned the world’s best indoor resort of its kind in a prestigious international awards scheme.
Hotels, resorts, and companies from around the globe involved in the ski sector annually compete for a wide range of accolades in the World Ski Awards, considered the skiing tourism industry’s equivalent of the Oscars for celebrating and rewarding excellence.
Ski Dubai, located in Mall of the Emirates, was nominated for the title among indoor ski destinations in Egypt, Germany, China, Spain, Scotland, New Zealand, and the Netherlands.
The winner was announced after obtaining the highest number of votes from ski industry professionals and consumers.

Majid Al-Futtaim Group, which owns Mall of the Emirates and Mall of Egypt, launched the Middle East’s first indoor ski resort in 2005. Since then, Ski Dubai had “cemented its position as one of the region’s most iconic attractions and welcomed more than 11 million tourists, snow sports enthusiasts, and guests from all around the world,” the company said in a statement.
It has introduced new innovations over the years, including a family-friendly snow park and a penguin encounter, which is home to a colony of king and gentoo penguins.

Ski Dubai had cemented its position as one of the region’s most iconic attractions and welcomed more than 11 million tourists, snow sports enthusiasts, and guests from all around the world. (WAM)

Mohammed El-Etri, director of global snow operations and projects at Majid Al-Futtaim, said: “Being in this category among other well-established ski resorts, including our sister brand Ski Egypt, inspires us to keep raising the bar as part of our endless pursuit at Majid Al-Futtaim to create great moments for everyone, every day.”
He noted that Ski Dubai had just celebrated its 15th anniversary, adding that the team was “deeply honored and privileged to have our commitment to excellence recognized by industry peers and guests, who voted for us to receive this prestigious title.

“Winning the title of world’s best indoor ski resort motivates us to achieve even more and we look forward to what the next 15 years will bring for Ski Dubai,” El-Etri added.
Sion Rapson, managing director of World Ski Awards, said: “Despite the unprecedented challenges faced by the global tourism sector this year, Ski Dubai has demonstrated unrivalled resilience, enabling it to continue providing its visitors with a world-class ski experience in a responsible and safe manner.
“I am delighted that it has been acknowledged by both the ski industry and the public by being voted world’s best indoor ski resort.”

Ski Dubai had cemented its position as one of the region’s most iconic attractions and welcomed more than 11 million tourists, snow sports enthusiasts, and guests from all around the world. (WAM)

The award was launched in 2013 and seeks to improve quality standards in the ski sector. It is also the only global initiative dedicated to honoring and celebrating excellence in ski tourism.
This is the latest accolade awarded to Ski Dubai, which recently won best service performance brands (hospitality and entertainment) at the Business Excellence Awards hosted by Dubai Economy, under the patronage of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, vice president and prime minister of the UAE, and ruler of Dubai.