Today cemeteries are sacred places, well manicured and meticulously policed for trash. But recent archeological excavations of the tombs of Pompeii, the Roman city buried by a volcanic eruption in A.D. 79, have revealed that trash tended to accumulate around the city’s dead. According to the MSNBC report, archaeologists originally thought the trash entered the tombs due to the volcanic blast. But it soon became clear that the trash was dropped there over time.
The thought is that ancient Romans were so worried about being forgotten after death that they chose to be interred in busy public spaces where the living would constantly come in contact with them. The side effect was that the tombs were subject to becoming trash receptacles (public sanitation would not come into vogue for quite some time, after all) and graffiti.
What price immortality?