- from Pompeii
Most of the people who lived near Vesuvius in A.D. 79 thought of it as just a very big hill. But it was really a sleeping volcano. Silently and slowly, it was building up pressure deep within.
Vesuvius had been active in the eighth century B.C. But between that time and A.D. 79—over 800 years—it had remained dormant (not active). That’s one reason no one thought much about the lovely hill on the outskirts of town.
Those 800 years may have seemed calm. But inside, Vesuvius was quietly simmering. Gases were building up, and there was nowhere for them to escape. The deadly pressure was growing.