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Journal of archaeology and ancient architecture

Collana

Vol. 9 / Decor. Decorazione e architettura nel mondo romano

copertina-decor-volume-1P. Pensabene, M. Milella, F. Caprioli (a cura di), Decor. Decorazione e architettura nel mondo romano, Atti del Convegno, Roma 21-24 maggio 2014, Thiasos Monografie 9, Roma 2017, voll. I-II, pp. 934.

ISBN 978-88-7140-754-8, e-ISBN 978-88-7140-753-1 Continue Reading

The conference investigates the role that typological analysis can still play today, i.e. the use of research tools based on classifications in groups, sub-groups, types; it is clear that they can not be separated from stylistic observations, remembering what Bianchi Bandinelli said about how style and type contribute to generating the shape. Shape does not coincide with type or with style, but is the container that allows the meeting of these two factors. However, the formalistic vision inherited from the history of the art of the past century has been in progress for some time now, and new analytical tools have been introduced, such as the knowledge of materials and working techniques, the attention to the historical context and to the meaning of the meeting between the performer and the customer and consequently the iconographic meaning. To these elements another interpretation is added, that of visual language through the tools of semantics. The conference then investigates this complex situation by providing data on recent research on the topic.

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Vol. 8 / L’architettura greca in Occidente nel III secolo a.C.

copertina-architettura-3-secolo

Luigi M. Caliò, Jacques des Courtils (a cura di), con la collaborazione di Francesca Leoni, L’architettura greca in Occidente nel III secolo a.C., Thiasos Monografie 8, Roma 2017, pp. 432.

ISBN 978-88-7140-787-6, e-ISBN 978-88-7140-786-9 Continue Reading

The interpretation of the Western Hellenistic culture represents a mainly epistemological problem. The division of the disciplines in which the ancient western world is separated, among the different archaeologies (Greek, Etruscan, Italic, Roman, Illyric), do not give account of a phenomenon that instead has, in the sharing of features and themes, its own peculiarities. Necessarily a model is born in which the concept of Romanization or Hellenization are no longer feasible. The phenomenon lives instead on cultural paradigms that are wide and common to all the ethnic components that act in Italy. Of course there is a Greek matrix, but already the Western Greece was living with highly autonomous and peculiar elements with respect to the Motherland. The 3rd century is the period in which this new koinè finds renewed incentive by important actors such as Rome, Agathocle and Hieron II in Sicily and the Molossian dynasty in Epirus, Magna Graecia and Taranto. The conference then investigates this complex situation by providing data on recent research on the topic.

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Vol. 7 | Bronze vessels from the Acropolis. Style and decoration in Athenian production between the sixth and fifth centuries BC

Figura TarditiC. Tarditi, Bronze vessels from the Acropolis. Style and decoration in Athenian production between the sixth and fifth centuries BC, Thiasos Monografie 7, Roma 2016, pp. 410

ISBN 978-88-7140-717-3, e-ISBN 978-88-7140-718-0

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Few years ago, when I was still Director of the National Archaeological Museum, I granted Ms Chiara Tarditi permission to study and eventually publish the bronze vases from the Acropolis of Athens, not only those exhibited in the Museum but also those in storage.

It was thus a great joy to see the manuscript of a full book entitled Bronze Vessels from the Acropolis. Style and Decoration in Athenian Production between the Sixth and Fifth Centuries BC. I was impressed by the systematic way the author dealt with a material which at first sight seems “unimpressive” since it mainly consists of fragments. Starting from epigraphic and literary testimony and subsequently examining technical and stylistic matters, Ms Tarditi manages to present an integral picture of ancient Athenian metalwork as well as its position among the workshops of other cities during the Archaic and Classical periods. The conclusion that Attic works were diffused in sanctuaries other than the Acropolis, such as those of Olympia, Dodona and Perachora, and also in more distant areas like Italy and the Black Sea, albeit on a smaller scale, betrays Ms Tarditi’s methodical, exhaustive and in-depth research.

I am indeed greatly pleased to see material from the National Museum published in such a thorough study, the result of the author’s hard and painstaking work. I believe that its contribution in the field of Attic but also of ancient Greek metalwork in general is great and I sincerely wish that the author, whom I now consider as an expert in the field, will present us with other similar works in the future.

Nicholaos Kaltzas

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Vol. 6 | Architetture del Mediterraneo. Scritti in onore di Francesco Tomasello

Figura vol 6

N. Bonacasa, F. Buscemi, V. La Rosa (a cura di), Architetture del Mediterraneo. Scritti in onore di Francesco Tomasello, Thiasos Monografie 6, Roma 2016, pp. 332

ISBN 978-88-7140-688-6-1, e-ISBN 978-88-7140-689-3

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The collection of essays, preceded by an Introduction by Francesca Buscemi, is dedicated to Francesco Tomasello on the occasion of his 70th birthday, an architect by training, among the few in Italy to have dedicated his life as a scholar to the ancient architecture and to have carried out his activity as a teacher in a faculty of Humanities. An architect-archaeologist, therefore, a figure certainly rare in both in Italian Universities and in the Superintendences, as pointed out by Ernesto De Miro in the first pages of the book. The editors, Vincenzo La Rosa, Nicola Bonacasa and Francesca Buscemi, significantly entitled the volume “Architectures of the Mediterranean” and selected, among the received proposals, those centered on issues relating to the interests of the honoree.

In the volume there are papers about architectural history, ancient topography, history of building techniques, in the same wide chronological span, ranging from Prehistory to Late Antiquity, and in the same geographical areas, Sicily, Crete, North Africa, where  Franco Tomasello’s scientific research took place and still takes place, research that is part of a long tradition of studies that involved in the same areas scholars like Antonino Di Vita, Nicola Bonacasa, Giovanni Rizza and the same Vincenzo La Rosa.

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Vol. 5 | Gli Ateniesi e il loro modello di città. Seminari di Storia e Archeologia greca I

Libro presentazione-1L.M. Caliò, E. Lippolis, V. Parisi (a cura di), Gli Ateniesi e il loro modello di città. Seminari di Storia e Archeologia greca I, Roma 25-26 giugno 2012, Thiasos Monografie 5, Roma 2014.

ISBN 978-88-7140-584-1

ISBN e-book: 978-88-7140-583-4

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Creare occasioni di incontro e discussione su temi concreti, nelle quali le differenze di approccio siano stimolo e motivo di conoscenza, eliminazione di luoghi comuni e arricchimento reciproco è probabilmente l’unico modo per spianare la strada a una migliore comprensione del passato, della sua vitale eredità e, in definitiva, di noi stessi.

Cercando di dare voce a questa prospettiva di confronto interdisciplinare e di apertura metodologica, il volume raccoglie i risultati di un seminario sulla storia e sull’archeologia di Atene tenuto a Roma tra il 25 e il 26 giugno 2012. In questo volume la città è dunque analizzata secondo il suo sviluppo cronologico, ma con un’attenzione particolare ai processi storici e sociali che ne hanno organizzato la topografia e l’immagine. Il fatto che questa polis abbia rappresentato un caso di sperimentazione sociale e un modello culturale e insediativo la rende infatti un centro fondamentale per la comprensione del mondo greco, rilevante anche per l’intero sistema poleografico mediterraneo.

I 25 contributi sono stati suddivisi in quattro diverse sezioni, cercando di mantenere la struttura della presentazione originaria e introducendo solo poche modifiche nella sequenza iniziale, connesse proprio alle considerazioni scaturite durante l’incontro. Il risultato è un’ulteriore occasione di riflessione sullo sviluppo di Atene tra il VII sec. a.C. e l’età tardoantica, un esame condotto all’interno dei processi organizzativi della struttura urbana in Grecia. I contributi partono dall’esigenza di ricostruire i diversi modi di vivere la città, vista sia nella sua capacità di adattamento al contesto storico sia attraverso i modelli sociali e rappresentativi comunitari elaborati di volta in volta. La prospettiva che collega gli studi presentati, in molti casi diversi per tipologie di approccio e di obiettivi, è quella della rivalutazione dei dati, delle testimonianze materiali su cui si fonda l’interpretazione; solo dall’analisi “filologica”, infatti, possono emergere conferme o nuove proposte interpretative; in ogni caso prevale l’esigenza di considerare la ricerca come un processo di accostamento progressivo alla realtà esaminata, che non può permettere risposte dogmatiche e semplificazioni, inadeguate a rappresentare la complessità dell’esperienza culturale.

Il seminario ha visto confluire filoni di studio ed esperienze diverse, dando spazio soprattutto a una nuova generazione di ricercatori. L’incontro è stato infatti concepito come occasione di riconoscimento e di confronto tra indirizzi che condividono esperienze formative comuni, come momento di ulteriore elaborazione; un punto della situazione necessario per potersi porre in un rapporto dialettico con la ricerca internazionale su Atene, per vedere se ci fossero forme e contenuti che, a parte incursioni episodiche, potessero motivare in maniera più consapevole la partecipazione al dibattito scientifico in corso. In questo senso, la collaborazione di ricercatori greci che operano sul campo rappresenta un richiamo che va ben oltre i singoli argomenti trattati, poiché pone l’accento sull’esigenza, continua e necessaria, di bilanciare letture d’insieme con approfondimenti specifici, in un incrocio di forme di indagine che contribuisce in maniera decisiva alla concretezza storica e contestuale.

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(Italiano) Vol. 4 | Ceramiche Tardo Minoico I da Haghia Triada (Creta): contesti, produzioni, funzioni

Puglisi immagine

D. Puglisi, Late Minoan I pottery from Haghia Triada: the assemblages and the system of production and consumption.

I. Pottery from the first excavations (1902-1914), Thiasos, Monografie 4, 2013, Ed. Quasar, Roma 2013, pp. XIV + 215, 28 tavv. f.t.

ISSN 2281-8774, ISBN 978-88-7140-536-0

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This book by D. Puglisi, member of the Italian Archaeological School in 2000-2002 and of the Italian Archaeological Mission at Haghia Triada and Phaistos since 1996, aims to gather in one volume all the published and unpub­lished Late Minoan I pottery from the first excavations at Haghia Triada (1902-1914) and to update, according to the more recent research trends, the old edition by L. Banti. The volume is divided into three parts. In the first part, the archival documents (in particular the notebooks and sketches of the first excavators, Federico Halbherr, Enrico Stefani and Roberto Paribeni) are used to reconstruct the pot­tery assemblages as retrieved in the old excavations. The nature of the evidence, which mostly consists of whole vases kept in the well preserved LM IB architectural contexts of the Villa Reale, is especially suited to the application of a synchronic perspective and to the investigation of the system of produc­tion and consumption of pottery in the site. This investigation, which is carried out in the second and third parts of the book, has largely been neglected in studies on LM I pottery, mostly because of the prevailing interest in chronology and the definition of relative sequences. Regionalism, in particular, has been frequently mentioned but never ana­lyzed in a systematic way. Starting from the evidence from Haghia Triada, more than 50 shapes and 30 motifs are discussed in the second part of the book, with an emphasis on their morphological and stylis­tic features and on their distribution on a local, regional or insular level of consumption. Final­ly, these features are classified in four groups on the basis of their geographical distribution and are examined in order to highlight the dynamics governing their spatial distribu­tion and the inferences that can be drawn for the system of pottery produc­tion. In the third part, a new approach to investigating the system of pottery consumption is proposed. It de­rives from an adaptation of the model elaborated by A. Rapoport for analysing the cultural use (that is to say the consumption) of space. A fundamental point in Rapoport’s approach is that there is not a univocal correspondence between human behaviour and the built environment, but rather a complex interaction between systems of activities and systems of settings. In the same way, vases are not used in isolation, only according to their morphological features, but are part of a system of types that is consumed in connection with systems of activities. Following this perspective, the author proposes to distinguish the pottery shapes from the first excavations into six “functional groups” according to their morphological features and their connection with systems of activities: 1) tableware; 2) small containers for valuable contents; 3-4) storage sets of medium and large dimensions; 5) shapes involved in production/transformation processes; 6) shapes connected to ritual practices. Furthermore, a comparison is carried out between the typological composition of pottery sets recovered in the Villa and in some houses of the Villaggio excavated in the second cycle of excavations (1977-2012) in order to investigate pottery consumption in different social contexts.

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Vol. 3 | Monumenti di Kos I. La Stoà Meridionale dell’agorà

Rocco, copertinaG. Rocco, Monumenti di Kos I. La Stoà Meridionale dell’agorà, Thiasos, Monografie 3, 2013, pp. 1-194 + 3 tavv. f.t.


ISSN 2281-8774, ISBN 978-88-7140-503-2

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Published in the context of the recently launched “Thiasos, journal of archaeology and ancient architecture”, the monograph inaugurates, being its first volume, a series of works dedicated to the architecture of Kos and other Dodecanese islands, that is going to include the edition of the Gymnasium and Central Baths by Monica Livadiotti. The volume is published in e-book form, but a translation in English, edited by Rita Sassu, is under preparation and will be shortly available in printed edition (always with Quasar publisher).

The study of the South Stoa of the agora is part of a more general analysis concerning the topography of the ancient city of Kos that the team of the Department of Sciences of Civil Engineering and Architecture at the Polytechnic University of Bari, directed by Giorgio Rocco, has been carrying out for many years, in collaboration with colleagues of the Ephorates of Dodecanese and the Archaeological Institute of Aegean Studies of Rhodes.

The hypothesis of reconstruction of the Stoa results from a research paying special attention to data coming from the survey of structures as well as architectural fragments and turns out to be a relevant element for the overall knowledge of the agora of Kos and its monuments, a topic the author dealt with in several contributions during the last few years. The very existence of this long porch defining the south side of the agora also solved a number of questions regarding the topographical configuration of the city’s central area, that remained unanswered since Luigi Morricone’s  excavation in the westernmost sector of the Hellenistic plateia and Charis Kanzia’s archaeological investigations in its eastern extension.

In addition, the description of the consistency of the monument and its reconstruction are complemented by a comprehensive system of comparisons with the coeval micro-Asiatic architecture, hence contributing to the understanding of the architectural production of the island in the Hellenistic age, giving it a greater importance than has hitherto been supposed.

The volume is then completed by the Catalogue of Architectural Fragments of South Stoa (edited by F. Liuni and A. Ferrante), by the Catalogue of Structural Stratigraphic Units (edited by M. Livadiotti and M. Messina) and by two brief studies, in Appendix, the first one regarding an unusual system of vertical fixing (A. Fino) and the second one about a particular lifting system that connects Kos’ architectural production to the “Ionian Renaissance” of the Hellenistic Asia Minor (M. Livadiotti).

The illustrative apparatus, entirely original, has been realized with the contribution of undergraduate, graduate and PhD students of DICAR of Bari, who, since 2004 participated in missions in Kos, which is gradually assuming the role of  “school yard” for future Italian “Bauforscher“.

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Vol. 2 | Asty. Studi sulla città greca

L.M. Caliò, Asty. Studi sulla città greca, vol. II della collana Thiasos, ed. Quasar, Roma 2012,

ISBN 978-88-7140-494-3

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Il volume comprende diversi capitoli, alcuni dei quali costituiscono una revisione di lavori già apparsi in altre sedi, mentre molti altri sono invece inediti e costituiscono un prezioso aggiornamento sullo stato degli studi riguardo ad un tema complesso, quale quello della nascita della polis. Le singole parti capitoli sono strutturate in modo autonomo, in una sorta di antologia per temi, ma un serrato sistema di rimandi interni rende la trattazione omogenea. Filo conduttore della narrazione è il racconto degli scrittori antichi – Tucidide, Erodoto, Senofonte, Aristotele, Strabone, Vitruvio, Pausania – il cui contributo costituisce per Caliò un apporto fondamentale per una ricerca su un argomento così articolato. Il tema della città è affrontato con una non comune apertura culturale, che fa trovare all’Autore spunti di riflessione e confronti non solo nei sistemi urbani del mondo orientale, soprattutto persiani, ma anche nella più recente storia della formazione della città europea nel Medioevo.

Lo studio, affrontato in modo multidisciplinare, secondo lo shotgun method teorizzato da Mogens Herman Hansen, fornisce un importante aggiornamento sullo stato degli studi riguardo al tema della città antica, argomento che l’Autore conosce bene e a cui ha dedicato numerosi contributi negli ultimi anni, venendo a costituire un utile e valido strumento per chiunque voglia approfondire questa specifica tematica.

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Vol. 1 | Il campus. Organizzazione e funzione di uno spazio pubblico in età romana. Le testimonianze in Italia e nelle province occidentali

A. Borlenghi, Il campus. Organizzazione e funzione di uno spazio pubblico in età romana. Le testimonianze in Italia e nelle province occidentali, vol. I della collana Thiasos, ed. Quasar, Roma 2011,

ISBN 8871404548, 9788871404547

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The topic investigated by the volume, that inaugurates Thiasos Series and is authored by Aldo Borlenghi, perfectly meets the initiative aim. It is indeed an in-depth research on a scarcely analyzed subject, i.e. the campus, a monumental space of the Roman city in Italy and in western provinces, integrating the complex representative system displayed in public architecture. The volume does not simply deals with typological issues, but it rather starts from the problem of recognition and definition of the structural features of the campus in order to understand its functions, reasons of diffusion, social meanings in heterogeneous cultural and chronological contests.

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