Hand-colored engraving from the book “Campi Phlegraei: Observations on the Volcanoes of the Two Sicilies” by William Hamilton (1730-1803). The drawing shows the cover and excavations at the Isis temple in Pompeii.
“Campi Phlegraei” is a report that documents eruptions from the late 18th century. William Hamilton was a British envoy who observed the behavior of Vesuvius. “Campi Phlegraei” (flaming fields) refers to frequent and sudden eruptions that have affected the region around Naples. This area was often a destination for wealthy travelers who wanted to feel the ancient atmosphere.
Hamilton’s position is a rich source of knowledge about volcanoes. The Briton watched, among others explosion in 1767. The report is enriched with numerous illustrations. In total, three books of his notes were created.