Taken during her trip to Pompeii in 2005, the woman blames her 15 years of bad luck — which includes financial troubles for her entire family and a double mastectomy — on a curse associated with the items she took from the historic city. The box returned contained two white mosaic tiles, two pieces from an amphora vase, and a ceramic wall tile.
In the letter, the woman repented by explaining that she only wanted to have a piece of history “that no one could have” and that she was “young and stupid.” The letter went on to read, “I took a piece of history that has crystallized over time and that has a lot of negative energy in it. People have died in such a horrible way and I have taken pieces related to that land of destruction.”
Addressing that her string of bad luck has been a result of the stolen artifacts, the letter ended with: “We are good people and I don’t want to pass this curse on to my family or children. For this forgive me for the gesture made years ago, I learned my lesson. I just want to shake off the curse that has fallen on me and my family. Please accept these artifacts so that you do the right thing for the mistake I made. I am so sorry, one day I will return to your beautiful country to apologize in person.”
Many superstitious travelers refrain from picking up objects on sacred grounds as they believe that the energy from the location is connected and imbued in the surroundings. And with the history of Pompeii, where the entire city was wiped out in 79 A.D. with the eruption of Mount Vesuvius, it’s safe to say that the artifacts are best left on site.
As for the Canadian woman, she’s not alone. The Pompeii Antiquarium has revealed that over the years, more than 100 letters have been sent in asking for forgiveness for a similar act. There’s even a small area dedicated to displaying some of the letters asking for the curse to be lifted.