Herculaneum, Italy | Now modern Ercolano, Herculaneum was founded by the Greeks before coming under Samnite, and eventually, Roman control. Inhabitants worshipped Hercules, as well as Venus and Apollo. Along with Oplontis, Pompeii, and Stabiae, it was destroyed by the infamous AD 79 eruption of Mount Vesuvius. Though not as deeply affected as Pompeii, Herculaneum was buried under a dense turf by the pyroclastic flows, sealing it off from the rest of the world for about 1700 years. The surprisingly good state of preservation of the town’s structures and victims is due to the pyroclastic surges. Excavation of the site began in 1738 by Spaniard Rocque Joaquin de Alcubierre, but was abandoned when Pompeii was discovered because it was easier to unearth (it was under about 4 meters of debris whereas Herculaneum was under roughly 25 meters). Excavation resumed in the 20th century, but the town has yet to be fully uncovered. For now, further discovery is on hold as saving the city is of the utmost importance. Despite being well preserved for 1700 years, the town immediately began to deteriorate after the initial excavations, and continues to do so because of tourism and vandalism.