Wars within the frontiers: archaeologies of rebellion, revolt and civil war
chapterposted on 14.03.2016, 16:11 by Neil J. Christie
Civil war is much documented by text, but far too little by archaeology. The later Roman world was one often afflicted by civil conflict and power struggles between rival emperors, generals and troops, and these all appear to have had serious impacts on communities, regions, economies and frontiers. In what ways though can archaeology offer a guide or additional insight into these many conflicts? Or are these wars intangible materially, despite their destructive human impact? This paper broadly considers the types of materials and evidence—from walls to coins—that might reveal something of the 3rd to 5th c. wars that damaged the Roman West in particular, and argues that much more weight needs to be placed on these internal traumas.