© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Hand-coloured etching by Peter Fabris (active 1768-1779) after his own drawing. One of five illustrated plates from the 1779 supplement to William Hamilton's (1730-1803) study of Italian volcanoes, 'Campi Phlegraei' (published in Naples, 1776). Based on letters to the Royal Society in London, 'Campi Phlegraei' was a more precise study of volcanoes than had previously existed, illustrating Hamilton's claim that volcanoes are creative rather than destructive natural forces.
An eruption of Mount Vesuvius as seen from Posillipo, Kingdom of Naples, 9 August 1779.