Archaeologists in Pompeii, the city that dates back to 79 AD Chr buried in a volcanic eruption made the extraordinary find of a frescoed hot food and drink shop that offered Roman passers-by the ancient equivalent of street food

Known as Termopolium, Latin for hot drinks counter, the shop was discovered on the Regio V site of the archaeological park, which is not yet open to the public

In some of the deep terracotta jars with hot food, traces of almost 2000 year old groceries found that the shopkeeper lowered into a counter with circular holes

The front of the counter was decorated with brightly colored frescoes, some of which depict animals that were part of the ingredients in the food being sold, such as a chicken and two ducks hanging upside down

“This is an exceptional find. It is the first time that we have excavated an entire termopolium,” said Massimo Ossana, director of the Pompeii Archaeological Park

Archaeologists also found a decorated bronze drinking bowl known as a patera, ceramic glasses used for cooking stews and soups, wine bottles, and amphorae

About 13 lived in Pompeii, 23 km southeast of Naples000 people when it was buried under ashes, pumice pebbles, and dust as it endured the force of an eruption equivalent to many atomic bombs

“Our preliminary analysis shows that the numbers on the front of the counter represent at least some of the food and beverages sold there,” said Valeria Amoretti, a local anthropologist

Ms. Amoretti said traces of pork, fish, snails and beef were found in the containers, a discovery she described as “a testament to the wide variety of animal products used in dishes”

About two-thirds of the 66 hectare ancient city was uncovered Discovered in the 16th century and the organized excavations began around 1750

Pompeii is a rare documentation of Greco-Roman life It is one of the most popular attractions in Italy and a UNESCO World Heritage Site

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World news – AU – Archaeologists uncover an old street grocery store in Pompeii