National Archaeological Museum of Naples

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National Archaeological Museum of Naples

The National Archaeological Museum of Naples ( Italian Museo archeologico nazionale di Napoli ) houses one of the most important archaeological collections in the world.


The Archaeological Museum in Naples was founded in Portici in 1787 following the collection of the Naples royal family. The foundations from the two large excavations in Herculaneum and Pompeii formed the basis . There were also several important, previously private collections (such as the Farnese Collection ) that had existed since the Renaissance . The exhibition was housed in a building erected in 1615 for the University of Naples. The collection consists of artefacts from Roman times, finds from ancient Greek cities and examples from pre-Roman cultures of southern Italy that were found during the Bourbon era . Statues, frescoes, mosaics and ceramics form the main component.

Exhibition building, rooms and collection

The Renaissance-style building is divided into four exhibition areas. The exhibits are arranged thematically as follows:

  • Ground floor:
    Farnese collection, Greek and Roman sculptures from Campania
  • Basement:
    Egyptian collection, inscriptions

  • Mezzanine floor: secret cabinet , mosaics, coins and medals
  • Upper floor:
    Villa dei Papiri , Neapolitan and Greek finds from the Bay of Naples, prehistoric finds, excavations or copies from Pompeii, Temple of Isis from Pompeii, images of Vesuvius .
Egyptian collection

The museum houses the third largest Egyptian collection in Italy (after the Museo Egizio in Turin and the Museo Gregoriano Egizio of the Vatican Museums ).

Secret Cabinet ( Gabinetto Segreto )

In the secret cabinet there is an extensive collection of ancient Roman erotic frescoes, vases and objects, which mainly come from the excavations in Pompeii. For decades this collection could only be viewed to a limited extent.

Bronze sculptures from the Villa dei Papiri

During the excavations of the Villa dei Papiri near Herkulaneum, numerous exceptionally well-preserved bronze sculptures were discovered, which are shown in a separate collection in the museum.

Atlas Farnese

Well-known exhibits

Well-known exhibits include the Hercules Farnese , the Atlas Farnese, the sculptural group of the tyrannicide and the Venus Kallipygos . The most famous mosaic is the famous mosaic of the Battle of Alexander from the House of the Faun in Pompeii. The Cave Canem floor mosaic (warning of the dog) from Pompeii is just as well known .


  • Alfonso de Franciscis : The National Archaeological Museum of Naples . Ditta Vincenzo Carcavallo, Naples 1992
  • Enrica Pozzi among others: The National Archaeological Museum of Naples . Federico Garolla, Milan 1986
  • Art and Exhibition Hall of the Federal Republic of Germany (Ed.): Masterpieces of Antiquity from the National Archaeological Museum of Naples , Wienand, Cologne 1995, ISBN 3-87909-419-5
  • Under the volcano. Masterpieces of Antiquity from the National Archaeological Museum in Naples , Burkert and Müller, Heidelberg 1995 ( Vernissage 1/1995)

Web links

Commons : National Archaeological Museum, Naples  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Coordinates: 40 ° 51 '12.2 "  N , 14 ° 15' 1.7"  E