Venereum (after goddess Venus) was an element of ancient Roman private apartments found particularly in Pompeii. It was originally interpreted as a specialized apartment or room dedicated to sexual activities.[1][2] One venereum was found in the House of Julia Felix and another one in the House of Sallust, both in Pompeii.[2] In the latter house venereum was a garden with several separate rooms.[2]

A venereum in the House of Sallust

A Latin inscription in the House of Julia Felix reports that "on the estate of Julia Felix... a venereum", among other things, was "to be let for a term of five continuous years, from the first to the sixth of the Ides of August".[1] The accompanying abbreviation SQDLENC is conjectured to stand for "Si quis domi lenocinium exerceat ne conducito" ("Let no one apply who keeps a brothel").[1] The venereum in the House of Sallustius included a bedchamber, a triclinium and a lararium.


  1. ^ a b c Thomas Henry Dyer (1871). Pompeii: Its history, buildings, and antiquities. An account of the destruction of the city, with a full description of the remains, and of the recent excavations, and also an itinerary for visitors. Bell & Daldy. p. 69.
  2. ^ a b c Eric Moormann (2015). Pompeii's Ashes: The Reception of the Cities Buried by Vesuvius in Literature, Music, and Drama. Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co KG. p. 50. ISBN 1614518734.