Some seventeen years earlier, at the end of February AD 61, or whenever the hell it was, under the consulate of C. Paetus and P. Turpilianus, the Apostle Paul had dropped anchor in Puteoli. For two years he had been imprisoned in Caesarea, and was now, accompanied by Luke, on his way to Rome to lodge an appeal at Nero’s court. Luke was working on The Acts of the Apostles, and had just enough paper with him to write up the last few chapters, Chapters 25, 26, 27, and 28. He had already worked out most of it in his head, and he sat down to work on all four every now and again.
Paul and Luke had begun their voyage aboard the Edremit, but she succumbed to peril and was wrecked in a severe storm (there were plenty of signs that year too), which forced them to anchor in Malta, where they then continued aboard a ship bound for Syracuse in Sicily. There they stayed for two or three days before setting sail for Puteoli.
Back then, Puteoli was Italy’s largest seaport. It wasn’t Naples, and it wasn’t Pompeii, it was Puteoli, and Puteoli, known as the “window to the world,” attracted people from all over. Hence, many languages were to be heard, gods worshipped, and a plethora of wares and culinary specialties could be found. Indeed, sooner or later, everything found its way to Puteoli – ideas, philosophies, fashions, art forms, manners, and customs. In this way, Puteoli was comparable to Pompeii – although, if truth be told, it was more Pompeii than Pompeii itself.
And what’s something called that’s more Pompeii than Pompeii? Simply put, Puteoli.
Literally speaking, of course. I don’t mean this metaphorically. Metaphorically speaking, something that’s more Pompeii than Pompeii would be something else entirely. It would be something even more awesome than the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, so to speak. I mean, of teenagers, you can say that they “hang” more than those Hanging Gardens of Babylon, or that someone’s derrière does, or, for that matter, that the pyramids are only a euphemism for a particular phenomenon. Take the Colossus of Rhodes, for instance. Arguably, this colossus, too, might merely just be a euphemism for a monumental clod.
It’s available in several languages, just not sure about English!