Most neoclassical works based on the discoveries at Herculaneum and Pompeii were imitations of an art thought to be formally and morally superior to that of the eighteenth century. Objects and paintings gathered from the sites that failed to meet this standard were stashed away in a “secret cabinet of obscene objects” in the Naples Museum, which, with some brief interludes, was locked up for two hundred years and only in 2000 put on public display.1 Long before this, however, the repressed erotic and deviant underside of the Vesuvian remains came to light again, if at first in veiled form.
Notes on contributors
Alison Mairi Syme
Alison Mairi Syme completed her PhD at Harvard University in November 2004 and currently teaches at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.