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Harnessed horse unearthed in ancient stable near Pompeii

Harnessed horse unearthed in ancient stable near Pompeii
An archaeologist inspects the remains of a horse in the Pompeii archaeological site, Sunday, Dec. 23, 2018. (Cesare Abbate / Associated Press)

Archaeologists have unearthed the petrified remains of a harnessed horse and saddle in the stable of an ancient villa in a Pompeii suburb.

Pompeii archaeological park head Massimo Osanna told Italian news agency ANSA that the villa belonged to a high-ranking military officer, perhaps a general, during Roman times.

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Osanna was quoted Sunday as saying the remains of two or three other horses were also discovered.

An archaeologist inspects the remains of a horse skeleton.
An archaeologist inspects the remains of a horse skeleton. (Cesare Abbate / Associated Press)

The villa's terraces had views of the Bay of Naples and Capri island. The area was first excavated during the early 1900s but later reburied.

The volcanic eruption of Mt. Vesuvius destroyed flourishing Pompeii, near present-day Naples, in AD 79.

Osanna says suffocating volcanic ash or boiling vapors killed the horses. He hopes the villa eventually will be open for public visits.

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