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[vuh-soo-vee-uh s]
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  1. Mount, an active volcano in SW Italy, near Naples. Its eruption destroyed the ancient cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum a.d. 79. About 3900 feet (1190 meters).
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British Dictionary definitions for vesuvius


  1. a volcano in SW Italy, on the Bay of Naples: first recorded eruption in 79 ad, which destroyed Pompeii, Herculaneum, and Stabiae; numerous eruptions since then. Average height: 1220 m (4003 ft)Italian name: Vesuvio (veˈzuːvjo)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for vesuvius


volcano near Naples, of unknown origin; perhaps from Celtic root *ves- "mountain" or Oscan fesf "smoke, steam."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper