Skip to content
Register Sign in Wishlist

Roman Tombs and the Art of Commemoration
Contextual Approaches to Funerary Customs in the Second Century CE

$36.99 (F)

  • Author: Barbara E. Borg, University of Exeter and Stellenbosch University, South Africa
  • Date Published: May 2022
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781108460354

$ 36.99 (F)

Add to cart Add to wishlist

Other available formats:
Hardback, eBook

Looking for an examination copy?

This title is not currently available for examination. However, if you are interested in the title for your course we can consider offering an examination copy. To register your interest please contact providing details of the course you are teaching.

Product filter button
About the Authors
  • The history of funerary customs in Rome contains many unanswered questions and controversial debates, especially concerning the significant developments of the second century CE. In this book, distinguished historian Barbara E. Borg employs the full range of material and written evidence to explore four key questions that change our view of Roman society and its values. For the first time, senatorial burial practices can be reconstructed and contrasted with those of other classes. Borg then explains the change from incineration to inhumation as a revival of old Roman mores that accelerated after the example set by Hadrian. In the third chapter, she argues that tombs became prime locations for promoting and displaying long family lines among the elite, which then inspired freedmen to undertake similar commemorative practices. Finally she explores the association of deceased persons with the divine and apotheosis through portraits on divine body shapes and temple tombs.

    • Proposes a new, contextual approach to Roman funerary culture that integrates art, archaeology, epigraphy and literary sources
    • Yields new and unexpected results regarding questions so far considered unsolvable or highly controversial
    • Shows how the evidence for Roman funerary culture is a major source of evidence for Roman social history
    Read more

    Reviews & endorsements

    'This is an outstanding piece of work - the product of a very long period not only of thinking about this material but of doing fundamental research into what we know archaeologically. Borg is a pioneer in the new era that has been systematic about the study of assemblages - notably looking back into the old archives as well as at relatively rare modern finds. The book casts vibrant new light on questions of monument and memory, the shift from cremation to inhumation, the problems of individual apotheosis; it brilliantly marshals archaeological evidence against a series of epigraphically generated assumptions about individualism and against familial commemoration in the context of the Roman tomb, which dominated the scholarship of last generation.' Jaś Elsner, University of Oxford

    Customer reviews

    Not yet reviewed

    Be the first to review

    Review was not posted due to profanity


    , create a review

    (If you're not , sign out)

    Please enter the right captcha value
    Please enter a star rating.
    Your review must be a minimum of 12 words.

    How do you rate this item?


    Product details

    • Date Published: May 2022
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781108460354
    • length: 369 pages
    • dimensions: 243 x 168 x 19 mm
    • weight: 0.643kg
    • contains: 100 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. In search of deceased senators
    2. Reviving tradition in Hadrianic Rome: from incineration to inhumation
    3. Family matters: the long life of Roman tombs
    4. Straddling borderlines: divine connotations in funerary commemoration.

  • Author

    Barbara E. Borg, University of Exeter and Stellenbosch University, South Africa
    Barbara E. Borg is Professor of Classical Archaeology at the University of Exeter. She has published widely on Greek and Roman art, archaeology and history, and her monographs include Crisis and Ambition: Tombs and Burial Customs in Third-Century CE Rome (2013). She is editor of Paideia: The World of the Second Sophistic (2004) and A Companion to Roman Art (2015).

Sorry, this resource is locked

Please register or sign in to request access. If you are having problems accessing these resources please email

Register Sign in
Please note that this file is password protected. You will be asked to input your password on the next screen.

» Proceed

You are now leaving the Cambridge University Press website. Your eBook purchase and download will be completed by our partner Please see the permission section of the catalogue page for details of the print & copy limits on our eBooks.

Continue ×

Continue ×

Continue ×
warning icon

Turn stock notifications on?

You must be signed in to your Cambridge account to turn product stock notifications on or off.

Sign in Create a Cambridge account arrow icon

Find content that relates to you

Join us online

This site uses cookies to improve your experience. Read more Close

Are you sure you want to delete your account?

This cannot be undone.


Thank you for your feedback which will help us improve our service.

If you requested a response, we will make sure to get back to you shortly.

Please fill in the required fields in your feedback submission.