Urban Landscape Survey in Italy and the Mediterranean [Hardback]

F. Vermeulen (Editor); Gert-Jan Burgers (Editor); Simon Keay (Editor); Cristina Corsi (Editor)

ISBN: 9781842174869 | Published by: Oxbow Books | Year of Publication: 2012 | Language: English 288p, 115 b/w illus, 45 colour illus, 8 tables,

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Urban Landscape Survey in Italy and the Mediterranean


Field survey has been making a major contribution to our understanding of the rural landscapes of the Mediterranean for nearly forty years. During that time the techniques used to map ancient settlement patterns have grown in sophistication from being a process of simply identifying sites in the landscape, to one which provided nuanced understandings of their layouts, chronologies and contexts. This has led to a revolution in how archaeologists approach urban sites, with survey techniques being used increasingly often to generate a plan of a town site prior to excavation as a way of ensuring that the excavation can be used to address site-specific questions in a way that had not been possible before. Most recently, research has begun to reveal the advantages of integrating a range of different non-destructive techniques on urban sites. In combination with exciting new computer-based means of data visualization, all of this work means that it is now possible to virtually reconstruct a buried town within a relatively short space of time, as opposed to the old and destructive excavation-centered approach that could take generations. Unsurprisingly these advances are starting to make a very important understanding to urbanism in general and the Roman Empire in particular.

Urban Landscape Survey in Italy and the Mediterranean builds upon all these new developments and is one of the first publications to focus exclusively upon the contribution of survey techniques to our understanding of ancient towns. It addresses methodology led enquiry into the nature of urban settlements primarily in Italy, but also in Greece, Turkey, Croatia, Portugal and Spain. The twenty-two papers from leading specialists in the field focus on two underlying themes. The first deals with the characterization of urban sites and draws upon a wide range of case studies. These range from key protohistoric centres in central and south Italy, to towns that epitomise the contradictions of cultural change under Rome, such as Paestum, Aquinum and Sagalassos, to Roman centres such as Teano, Suasa and Ammaia. The second theme is inter-urban relationships, looking in particular at wider urbanized landscapes in Italy. The fascinating selection of recent and on-going projects presented here significantly moves the limits of our current knowledge about ancient towns.

Table of Contents

Introduction (Frank Vermeulen, Gert-Jan Burgers, Simon Keay and Cristina Corsi)

Part 1: Intra-Urban Survey
Pre-Roman site-planning
1. Intensive on-site artefact survey and proto-urbanization, case studies from Central and South (P. Attema and T. de Haas)
2. Urban landscape surveys on the Salento Isthmus, Italy (G.-J. Burgers)

Towns in a ‘transitional phase’
3. Amiternum and the upper Aterno-valley: approaching a Sabine-Roman town and its territory (M. Heinzelmann and D. Jordan)
4. Paestum romana. Problemi di interpretazione e strategie di intervento (M. Cipriani and A. Santoriello)
5. Contemporary Issues in Surveying Complex Urban Sites in the Mediterranean Region: the example of the city of Thespiai (Boeotia, Central Greece) (J. Bintliff)
6. Towards integrated non-invasive research on complex urban sites: Ljubljana research in Tanagra and beyond (B. Slapšak) 7. Strategies and results of the urban survey in the Upper City of Ephesus (S. Groh)
8. Indagini multidisciplinari per la ricostruzione del paesaggio urbano: ricerche sulla topografia antica di Hierapolis di Frigia (G. Scardozzi)
9. The integrated urban survey at Sagalassos (F. Martens, B. Mušic, J. Poblome and M. Waelkens)

The Roman approach to townscapes
10. Progetto ‘Ager Aquinas’. Indagini aerotopografiche finalizzate allo studio della città romana di Aquinum (Lazio, Italia) (G. Ceraudo)
11. Teano (Teanum Sidicinum), Campania (S. Hay, S. Keay and M. Millett)
12. Geophysical Prospection in the Vesuvian Cities (J. Ogden, G. Tucker, S. Hay, K. Strutt, S. Kay, S. Keay, D. Camardo and S. Ellis)
13. Suasa (Marche): metodologie di ricerca integrate per la ricostruzione storica della città (M. Destro and E. Giorgi)
14. Nuove indagini integrate a Classe (RA). Stato attuale e prospettive di ricerca (F. Boschi)
15. Surveying urban sites in North Coastal Etruria: Pisae, Portus Pisanus, Vada Volaterrana (M. Pasquinucci, S. Ducci, S. Menchelli, A. Ribolini, A. Bianchi, M. Bini and S. Sartini)
16. The Ammaia project: integrated approaches for studying Roman towns in Lusitania (C. Corsi)
17. The Burnum Project: an integrated approach to the study of a Roman castrum in Croatia (F. Boschi and E. Giorgi)

Part 2: Inter-Urban Relationships
18. Urban archaeology, urban networks and population dynamics in Roman Italy (L. de Ligt)
19. GIS and intervisibility analyses for the study of archaeological landscapes: problems of interpretation. Case study: the Murge plateau in the Archaic period (G. Semeraro)
20. Surveying an Adriatic valley: a wide area view on early urbanization processes in northern Picenum (F. Vermeulen and D. Mlekuz)
21. Setting towns in their landscape: forms of urbanism in the Ager Faliscus (R. Opitz, S. Stoddart)

Concluding Notes
22. Urban landscape surveys: a view from the end (Neil Christie)
23. A proposito di Urban Landscape Survey: qualche nota di metodo (F. Coarelli)

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