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The Archaeology of Death in Roman Syria

The Archaeology of Death in Roman Syria
Burial, Commemoration, and Empire


  • Date Published: July 2017
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107131415


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About the Authors
  • In the first centuries of the Common Era, an eclectic collection of plain and embellished underground and aboveground tombs filled the cemeteries of the Roman province of Syria. Its inhabitants used rituals of commemoration to express messages about their local identity, family, and social position, while simultaneously ensuring that the deceased was given proper burial rites. In this book, Lidewijde de Jong investigates these customs and the belief systems that governed the choices made in the commemoration of Syrian men, women and children. Presenting the first all-inclusive overview of the archaeology of death in Roman Syria, this book combines spatial analysis of cemeteries with the study of funerary architecture, decoration, and grave goods, as well as information about the deceased provided by sculptural, epigraphic, and osteological sources. It sheds a new light on life and death in Syria and offers a novel way of understanding provincial culture in the Roman Empire.

    • Provides a comprehensive overview of the archaeology of death in Roman Syria
    • Combines a flowing narrative section and a detailed catalogue for an in-depth analysis
    • Proposes a new model to address cultural change
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    Product details

    • Date Published: July 2017
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107131415
    • length: 355 pages
    • dimensions: 260 x 183 x 22 mm
    • weight: 0.96kg
    • contains: 159 b/w illus. 10 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Locating the dead: space, landscape, and cemetery organization
    2. The tomb: architecture and decoration
    3. Gifts for the dead: function and distribution of grave goods
    4. The dead: bones, portraits, and epitaphs
    5. Funerary beliefs: differentiation, continuity, and change in ritual
    6. The global and the local: Romanization, globalization, and the Syrian cemetary
    Appendix 1. Sites
    Appendix 2. Tomb types
    List of online appendices.

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    The Archaeology of Death in Roman Syria

    Lidewijde de Jong

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  • Author

    Lidewijde de Jong, Rijksuniversiteit Groningen, The Netherlands
    Lidewijde de Jong is Assistant Professor in Archaeology at Rijksuniversiteit Groningen, The Netherlands. She has extensive fieldwork experience in the Middle East and has co-directed projects in Syria. She was awarded a Visiting Scholar Fellowship at the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World at New York University. She has published widely on mortuary archaeology and Roman Mesopotamia. She serves on the Advisory Board of the American Journal of Archaeology and is the chair of the Center for the Study of Culture, Religion and Society - Interdisciplinary Studies in the Ancient World (CRASIS) at Rijksuniversiteit Groningen.

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