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Journal of archaeology and ancient architecture

Tag Archives: età ellenistica

The Meeting Halls of the Hellenistic Epirus

Author: E. Rinaldi

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The birth of an urban culture in Epirus between 4th and 3rd cent. B.C. shows the progressive construction and monumentalisation of the places of civic participation (agoras and sanctuaries) in the Hellenistic period. The political architecture displayed the greatest level of monumentality and was the result of the growing needs of the local communities to attribute autonomy and sacredness to civic and federal institutions. In this sense, this article argues that the buildings with a quadrangular plan, built within the main public spaces of the Epirote cities, were especially meeting venues for political gatherings of officials and civic bodies. These public “meeting halls” were perfectly integrated in the framework of the cultural Hellenistic koinè shared throughout the Ancient Mediterranean.

Paesaggio rurale ed economia in età ellenistica nel territorio di Catania (Sicilia orientale)

Author: R. Brancato

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Paper’s aim is to outline the main developments in settlement organization in the Plain of Catania throughout the Hellenistic period: on the basis of the new available archaeological map, it is possible to attempt to fill our knowledge gap on “peripheral landscapes” of Eastern Sicily. A systematic research on the rural landscapes of the Plain of Catania started in 1996 when a series of topographic surveys were carried out according to the Forma Italiae Project’s methodology. Mostly covering the western portion of the plain of Catania, due to their unexploited potential, these topographical surveys are of great interest for any attempt at analysing rural landscapes and routes and road networks in antiquity: within the survey area (425 kmq) 132 archaeological sites were identified, dating from the Neolithic to the Medieval period. Together with the existing amount of legacy data available from eastern Sicily, the survey data were stored in the Ru.N.S (Rural Networks in Sicily) database. The results obtained through the use of the Ru.N.S database provide a vivid image of rural population trends in Hellenistic Sicily, and may help in reconstructing the organization of the rural landscapes throughout the transition from the Greek to the Roman period.

The Pigment Production Site of the Ancient Agora of Kos (Greece): Revisiting the material evidence

Author: Ariadne Kostomitsopoulou Marketou

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A late-Hellenistic production site was found at the eastern stoa of the agora of Kos. The presence of destroyed fire-structures indicates pyrotechnological processes, related to pigment manufacture and metallurgy. Pigment production included the treatment of natural earths and the manufacture of the artificial material Egyptian blue. Among the excavation’s finds were hollow tubular litharge rods, amorphous lead lumps and drops, and a small quantity of silver, which point to lead production and silver separation through cupellation. The co-existence of the two separate manufacturing activities at the same site may have been beneficial in supplying the workshop with raw materials and fuel. The strategic location of the production site in the commercial centre of the ancient town, with its connection to the port, would have facilitated trade. The production debris from the Koan site underlines the relationship between pigment manufacture and metallurgy.