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Thermopolium Interior

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Thermopolium Interior
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Photo Comments

View of the interior of a Fast Food establishment (thermopolium, popina, taberna) at Ostia. Note on the left, the tiered bench and the fresco on the wall.  This building was constructed in A.D. 125.

Thermopolia were small cook–shops where hot and cold food was sold.  They were used primarily by the lower classes as the elites would dine in the luxurious surroundings of their own homes.  The houses of lower classes of people rarely had kitchens, thus they would eat at an establishment such as this, or they would "carry out" the food to take back home. These thermopolia were situated street side on the ground floor of apartment buildings and even elite houses.