Two important elements converged to make this museum's collection of archeological finds one of the greatest of all time. First, in the Renaissance, the powerful Farnese family of Rome were some of the fiercest collectors of Greco-Roman antiquities around and by the 18th century the same family enjoyed great power in Naples, where they decided to move their vast collection. Second, the 18th century also saw the aercheological excavations of Pompeii and Herculaneum. While the 79 AD eruption of Vesuvius spelled disaster for the residents of those Roman settlements, their art, including wall frescoes, portraits and erotica, was preserved by the erruption and is now safely housed in this paltial museum. Be sure not to leave the museum before glancing at the Farnese Bull and collection of bronze statues discoverd at the luxurious Villa of the Papyri in Herculaneum.