Pistrinum di Sex Patulcius Felix (Ins. Or. II,8)


There are many shops along the northern section of Cardo V (the widest of the 3 uncovered); they are long and narrow, and their mezzanines were used as living quarters. Among these are the city's only two known pistrina (bakeries), both equipped with two millstones and smaller than those of Pompeii; the many manual millstones found in the digs also inform us that, in Herculaneum, most people ground their own flour at home. The pistor (baker) Sex. Patulcius Felix is the owner of the pistrinum at n. 8, as evidenced by a signet ring found here. The oven (built behind the apsidal room of the Palaestra) was protected from the evil eye by two stucco phalluses at the entrance: the same ones appear on a slab in the laboratory. The 25 round bronze baking pans, found in the back room of the shop, were used for baking the flat loaves (placentae).
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