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Black dog on Roman fresco

This post is also available in: Polish (polski)

Black dog on Roman fresco
Black dog on Roman fresco

Roman fresco from Pompeii showing a tied black dog. The object was decorated with a Roman street bar (called thermopolium) in Regio V. The painting was found without the words CAVE CANEM (“Beware of the dog”), but the image of the black dog was certainly intended to scare off intruders.

It is worth mentioning that there is an inscription on the frame around the dog: NICIA CINAEDE CACATOR, meaning “Nicias shameless shitter”. The name suggests Greek origins, probably a liberator who might have owned the premises. The inscription may have been left by some joker or a former bar worker.

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