The Periphery Of Lepcis Magna Suburban Topography And Land Use Of A Roman City
thesisposted on 10.07.2019, 11:18 by Andrea Zocchi
This PhD thesis is a study of the periurban space of the North African ancient city of Lepcis Magna (Tripolitania, Libya). More than 350 sites and significant finds are for the first time collected and analyzed in order to consider several aspects of suburban activities (infrastructural, social, religious, productive). The selected timeframe spans from the Punic period (sixth‐fifth centuries BC) through the Roman provincial era including Late Antique and Byzantine phases (fourth to sixth centuries AD). The data related to the sites comes from recent unpublished surveys in which I took part (2007‐2013) in addition to the information gained from archives and Superintendency reports. All the data are included in a site gazetteer (Volume II) that also comprises some appendices and tables. The discussion in Volume I (Synthesis) comprises the analysis related to multiple aspects of the ancient suburban landscape of Lepcis: the road network, religious structures, military installations, hydrological structures, villae, farms, entertainment structures, workshops, warehouses, caravanserais, docks, quarries, and funerary structures. Among the key achievements of the thesis are: a reappraisal of the roads around Lepcis and the identification of a block of centuriated land to the south‐east of the city; a proper classification of ancient hypogean tombs and mausolea; a quantitative assessment of rural production based on ancient presses; the first comprehensive study of ancient stone quarrying and water supply arrangements; the changing distribution of all of these activities over time and according to distance and its relationship with the city. The analysis of this data aims to highlight the economic, political and social aspects of the periphery of Lepcis Magna and demonstrates the development of the city itself through the centuries. Moreover, this thesis aims to better understand the phenomenon of Roman suburban spaces more generally and contributes to the knowledge of these significant ancient landscapes.