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Reuse and Renovation in Roman Material Culture
Functions, Aesthetics, Interpretations

Diana Y. Ng, Molly Swetnam-Burland, Brenda Longfellow, Margaret L. Laird, Catherine M. Keesling, Adrian J. Ossi, Elisha Ann Dumser, Esen Ogus, Gregor Kalas, Sheila Bonde
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  • Date Published: September 2018
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108473897


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About the Authors
  • This book explores the spoliation of architectural and sculptural materials during the Roman empire. Examining a wide range of materials, including imperial portraits, statues associated with master craftsmen, architectural moldings and fixtures, tombs and sarcophagi, arches and gateways, it demonstrates that secondary intervention was common well before Late Antiquity, in fact, centuries earlier than has been previously acknowledged. The essays in this volume, written by a team of international experts, collectively argue that re-use was a natural feature of human manipulation of the physical environment, rather than a sign of social pressure. Re-use often reflected appreciation for the function, form, and design of the material culture of earlier eras. Political, social, religious, and economic factors also contributed to the practice. A comprehensive overview of spoliation and re-use, this volume examines the phenomenon in Rome and throughout the Mediterranean world.

    • Argues that the practice of 'spoliation' was prevalent in the high Roman empire, earlier than previously supposed, and a natural feature of human manipulation of the physical environment rather than a sign of decay or social pressure
    • Deals with the social and political contexts of re-used materials
    • Opens new lines of inquiry in the field of classical studies, appealing to scholars of the ancient, late antique, and medieval periods
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    Product details

    • Date Published: September 2018
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108473897
    • length: 288 pages
    • dimensions: 261 x 185 x 18 mm
    • weight: 0.79kg
    • contains: 77 b/w illus. 1 map
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction. 'Re-use, renovation, reiteration' Diana Y. Ng and Molly Swetnam-Burland
    1. 'The re-use and redisplay of honorific statues in Pompeii' Brenda Longfellow
    2. 'The Vigiles, dynastic succession and symbolic reappropriation in the Caserma dei Vigili at Ostia' Margaret L. Laird
    3. 'The epigraphy of appropriation: retrospective signatures of Greek sculptors in the Roman World' Catherine M. Keesling
    4. 'Gateways to the past: the Hadrianic architecture of procession in Pisidian Antioch and Athens' Adrian J. Ossi
    5. 'Visual literacy and re-use in the architecture of late Imperial Rome' Elisha Ann Dumser
    6. 'Urban transformations at Aphrodisias in Late Antiquity: destruction or intentional preservation?' Esen Ogus
    7. 'Acquiring the antique in Byzantine Rome: the economics of architectural re-use at Santa Maria Antiqua' Gregor Kalas
    8. 'The afterlife of the amphitheater: cultural biography and social memory at Tarragona' Sheila Bond.

  • Editors

    Diana Y. Ng, University of Michigan, Dearborn
    Diana Y. Ng is Associate Professor of Art History, Department of Literature, Philosophy, and the Arts, University of Michigan, Dearborn. Her scholarship focuses on the public art and architecture of the Roman empire, especially in the Greek East. She has been published in the Journal of Roman Studies and Istanbuler Mitteilungen.

    Molly Swetnam-Burland, College of William and Mary, Virginia
    Molly Swetnam-Burland is Associate Professor of Classical Studies at the College of William and Mary, Virginia, and is a scholar of Roman painting and sculpture. She is the author of Egypt in Italy: Visions of Egypt in Roman Imperial Culture (Cambridge, 2015).


    Diana Y. Ng, Molly Swetnam-Burland, Brenda Longfellow, Margaret L. Laird, Catherine M. Keesling, Adrian J. Ossi, Elisha Ann Dumser, Esen Ogus, Gregor Kalas, Sheila Bonde

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