The Argolid under Roman rule (31 BC - AD 600)

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis (monograph)


title = "The Argolid under Roman rule (31 BC - AD 600)",
abstract = "This study focuses on the region of Argolid in the eastern part of the Greek Peloponnese during the Roman Imperial era, taking up a variety of aspects of life there based mainly on archaeological evidence. The introduction presents the study area and the background to the study. This is followed in the next chapter by a survey of the various kinds of sites of Roman date found in the Argolid. Cities, villages, villas and farmsteads are presented and discussed as are the sites and installations with non-residential functions like agricultural sites, baths, aqueducts, kilns, quarries, harbours, roads, religious sites and graves. The following chapter provides a diachronic overview of the sites. Settlement patterns for the Early, Middle and Late Roman periods are identified. While the Early and Middle Roman periods (31 BC- AD 300) were characterised by a limited variety of sites and the urban domination of the largely uninhabited countryside, the Late Roman period (AD 300-600) evidenced increased habitation in the countryside as well as greater variety of sites. The next chapter deals with three specific aspects – subsistence, religion and power structures – discussed in relation to the two defined periods in order to distinguish any diachronic developments. The agrarian economy of the early period was diversified and complemented by other activities after 300 AD, when the countryside was more intensively used. Villages and villas became more numerous, often located on the coast. Trade also increased, evidenced by the imported pottery found at most locations. Some of the villages and villas may have hosted local markets. Regarding religion, the established Greek religion prevailed, supplemented by Imperial cult in the Early/Middle Roman period and renewed interest in large sanctuaries in the second century. In the fourth century rural reoccupation was accompanied by renewed activity at rural cult places. Christianity existed mainly in the cities. Only a few early churches have been found in the countryside, where conversion was slow. Christians and pagans seem to have lived peacefully side by side. Social, economic and political power in the Early/Middle Roman period were seemingly held by local elites from Romanised families while in the Late Roman period society, this structure was augmented by new power factors such as the Church and members of the Emperor's staff, sharing the power with the existing city councils. The cities changed character: old monumental buildings were not repaired, while private urban villas were built. By that point, all levels of society showed signs of Romanisation. The patterns shown in the Argolid are consistent with those in other eastern mainland areas. The settlement pattern change at the beginning of the Late Roman period was part of a more profound, systematic shift involving many areas of the Argive society, created by a combination of Imperial policy, increased activity in the Eastern Mediterranean trading network and the proximity to Constantinople.",
keywords = "Antikens och forntidens historia, Ancient history, power structures, social structure, Christianisation, religious life, trade, subsistence, settlement patterns, Western Argolid, Southern Argolid, Methana, Troizenia, Epidaurea, Late Roman Greece, Argolid, Roman Greece, History of the Christian church, Kristna kyrkans historia, Cultural anthropology, ethnology, Kulturantropologi, etnologi",
author = "Ren{\'e}e Forsell",
note = "Defence details Date: 2001-09-29 Time: 10:15 Place: Carolinasalen, Kungshuset, Lundag{\aa}rd External reviewer(s) Name: Poulsen, Birthe Title: Lektor Affiliation: Odense, Danmark ---",
year = "2001",
language = "English",
publisher = "Classical archaeology and ancient history",
school = "Classical archaeology and ancient history",