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The University of Southampton
Archaeology Part of Humanities

Geoarchaeology of the Tiber River between Ostia and Portus, Italy Seminar

29 May 2014
Digital Humanities Lab (Room 3043) Building 65a Avenue Campus

For more information regarding this seminar, please email Ferréol Salomon at .

Event details

Ostia and Portus are two important Roman harbours sites located on the Tyrrhenian coast, nearly 20km downstream of Rome, in the Tiber River delta. These locations correspond to a fast-changing landscape (river and coastline mobility).

The first aim of the presentation is to reconstruct the origins of these two cities related to the Tiber River course. Secondly, the co-evolution of these two sites with the Tiber River channel is considered. Ostia corresponds to a city with slow development from an origin between the 7th and 3rd c. BC. Its urban growth is considered closely linked to the Tiber River channel and coastline mobilities. These aspects are considered under the spotlight of new analysis of sedimentary cores drilled in Ostia. Comparatively, Portus is a harbour system built ex-nihilo in the middle of the Ist c. AD. A complex system of canals was planned and built during and after the excavation of the Claudian harbour basin and subsequently modified during the Trajanic period. This canal system is studied in a multidisciplinary approach using sedimentary cores and compared to archaeological and geophyiscal data. We will consider the hydrosedimentary anthropoclimatic crisis in the Tiber River watershed during the period between the late 1st century BC and the early 1st century AD, and its consequences for the Ostia-Portus system.

Speaker information

Ferréol Salomon ,University of Southampton

Brice Noirot , University of Lyon 2. Graduate Student

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