For archaeology lovers of all ages, the Herculaneum Society offers unique access to world-leading research and opportunities to engage actively with this exceptional World Heritage site.


We are a charitable company founded in 2004 to raise public awareness about the archaeological site of Herculaneum, near Naples, Italy. Our objects are:


  1. Public Education: The Society promotes public education about Herculaneum, its history and the ongoing issues associated with excavating and developing the site;
  2. Research and Scholarship: the Society promotes research into all aspects of Herculaneum, including the continued investigation of the Villa of the Papyri and the publication of the results of research; and
  3. Conservation: the Society supports the conservation of the artefacts and buildings at Herculaneum for the benefit of the public now and in the future.


A Herculaneum papyrus charred by the volcano.
Greek letters can barely be discerned.

The Society:

  • organises biennial visits to Herculaneum, and many other informative events.
  • publishes an annual Newsletter and monthly e-bulletins about Herculaneum
  • has a strong presence in social media and on the web
  • has a solid membership base
  • sponsors schools competitions that encourage critical thinking about the issues facing the site
  • has helped establish the American Friends of Herculaneum Society (
  • provides bursaries for students and scholars working at or on Herculaneum, whether they are papyrologists, archaeologists or historians
  • has founded the series Sozomena: Studies in the Recovery of Ancient Texts
  • collaborates in applications to the Arts and Humanities Research Council for further study on Herculaneum.

This combination of initiatives has established the scholarly credentials of the Society, confirmed its presence as a player in advancing the cause of conservation and demonstrated its capacity to raise public awareness of Herculaneum. Join us today and help us make Herculaneum even better.


On 30 April 2015 the Friends of Herculaneum Society, formerly Registered Charity number 1107134, merged with the incorporated Herculaneum Society (Charity Registration number 1104632; Registered Company number 05153841). The Friends of Herculaneum Society became the body of non-trustee members of the Herculaneum Society.