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3 votes
0 answers

What was the estimated weight of transport wagons (plaustra) in 1st through 3rd century Rome?

I am writing a paper about land transport using oxen carts and wagons in central Italy during the High Empire (late 1st century BC to early 3rd century AD), including some computing simulations of ...
  • 41
6 votes
0 answers

What was the architectural predecessor of Roman triumphal arches?

Roman triumphal arches (fornix, ianus, then arcus triumphalis) are generally categorized into two main types: those with a single arched opening (e.g. Arch of Titus) and those with three openings (e.g....
  • 1,277
7 votes
1 answer

Formation of underground layers of Rome

I have recently came across several news articles (for example) from various decades, talking about existing underground structures in the city of Rome, which used to be above ground at some point of ...
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2 votes
1 answer

Major power shift in Gaul circa 350 B.C

I realize this is a little before history and therefore interpretive. I recall reading something about a shift that took place in Gaul, some time before the Romans came there. It may have been around ...
  • 3,270
3 votes
1 answer

Why is (the best) soot to be taken from glassmakers, according to Diocorides' "Materia Medica"?

"Fuligio pictoria [soot] that the painters use is taken from the glassmakers, as that is the best." (Diocorides, De Materia Medica 5-182) While glassmaking ...
  • 1,531
2 votes
1 answer

If archaeology shows that people abandoned the ancient Trojan region around the 6th century BC, why do we have so few written evidences of that?

My professor told us that people lived around the location of ancient Troy up to the beginning of the 6th century BC and moved away mostly because they couldn't deal with prices in Neorion Harbour. ...
6 votes
1 answer

What are the dimensions of this pomerium marker?

The pomerium of Vespasian from 75AD (pictured below) was moved to Santa Cecilia in Trastevere, Rome in the 20th century. What are its dimensions, and what is its height, measuring from street level to ...
11 votes
1 answer

What sources could Tacitus or Appian have used that have since been lost?

I was fascinated by the announcement of the 'virtual unrolling' of a fire-burned scroll in En-Gedi that has been analysed and found to be part of the book of Leviticus. As the Guardian noted, the ...
  • 111
6 votes
4 answers

How do I differentiate ancient ceramic from today's junk?

I've been to London's River Thames, a famous place where it is relatively easy to find ceramics and other relics of the past. I found something but I have no idea how to distinguish ancient stuff ...
10 votes
1 answer

Did some Roman/Pompeiian houses have atria for slaves?

According to Wikipedia ( the House of the Vettii brothers had two atria, one specifically for slaves. Servants' quarters are to one side off the ...
  • 7,822
14 votes
1 answer

Why do people still leave flowers at the Temple of Julius Caesar?

I visited Rome recently and did an audio tour through the Colosseum and Roman Forum archeological sites. In the Roman Forum there is the remains of the Temple of Caesar, where Julius Caesar was ...
  • 249