VII.1.44 Pompeii. December 2005. Looking east to entrance.
The hospitium had two doorways divided by a central pilaster, seen on the right above.
This pilaster was painted with the sign of an elephant surrounded around its body by a huge serpent and being rescued by a pigmy.
Above was a graffiti which possibly identified the owner as Sittius, who boasted that he had restored the elephant.
SITTIVS RESTITVIT ELEPHANTVM [CIL IV 806]
Underneath was an advert
HOSPITIVM HIC LOCATVR
TRICLINIVM CVM TRIBVS
ET COMM(odis) [CIL IV 807]
See Dobbins, J & Foss, P., 2008. The World of Pompeii. New York: Routledge. (p.477)
Sittius restituit elephantu(m) [CIL IV 806] (Sittius restored the elephant) was referring to the repainting of the sign.
He thought the owner, whether Sittius or an unknown, was keen to rent the premises as under the elephant was the painted notice
Hospitium hic locatur - triclinium cum tribus lectis [CIL IV 807] (Inn to let – triclinium with 3 couches).
Mau said the rest of the inscription was illegible.
See Mau, A., 1907, translated by Kelsey F. W. Pompeii: Its Life and Art. New York: Macmillan. (p.400)
VII.1.44 Pompeii. December 2006.
Looking east across marble encrusted counter with one urn.
VII.1.44 Pompeii. December 2006. Looking across counter to south-east corner.
VII.1.44 Pompeii. December 2005. North-east corner of bar.
VII.1.44 Pompeii. December 2006. Looking east to remains of triclinium at rear.
VII.1.44 Pompeii. May 2003. Looking west from the rear of the counter.
Photo courtesy of Nicolas Monteix.