Life by the Imperial Roads (Transylvania, Romania) - Roman Provincial Landscape Strategies - Excavation and Survey


Location: Rapolt, Hunedoara, Romania

Season: 
Sunday, May 31, 2015 to Saturday, July 4, 2015

Application Deadline: 
Friday, May 1, 2015

Flyer: roman_provincial_excavation_2014.pdf

Program Type

Field school
Volunteer

Affiliation:

Dacian and Roman Civilization Museum (Deva, Romania) and Archaeological Techniques and Research Center (Canada)

Project Director:

Alexander Brown (Archaeological Techniques and Researc Center - Canada); Dr. Gica Baestean (Dacian and Roman Civilization Museum, Deva, Romania)

Project Description

Our research area is situated between the richest gold deposits in Europe, the Dacian Kingdom’s political and religious capital and its fortified satellites in the Carpathian Mountains, and Sarmizegetusa Ulpia Traiana, the Roman capital of the Dacian provinces and the first Roman city North of the Danube. Southwestern Transylvania was a highly integrated military, political, and economic region. During the Roman colonial occupation, 102-271 AD, our target area around Simeria and Rapolt shows a very dynamic and intensive synthesis of Roman provincial life, where a multitude of processes of colonization and creolization take place side by side.

Bordering to the south the Gold Mountains with their extraordinarily well preserved Roman mining town of Alburnus Maior (Rosia Montana), the importance of this area is further enhanced by the immediate proximity of the most navigable waterway in Transylvania, the Mures River, and one of the imperial roads from Sarmizegetusa to Apulum (Alba Iulia), capital of Dacia Apulensis.  As such, the region was intensely populated by a great variety of settlements, ranging from small towns (municipia) to villages (vici), to small river harbors and road way stations (manisones and cauponae). Another feature that contributed to the variety of Roman provincial life in the region is the multitude of mineral and thermal springs in the area. As a result, the Roman landscape has seen an explosion of baths, such as those at Aquae (Calan) and Germisara (Geoagiu Bai), and of villae rusticae.

Our project seeks to explore and understand the integration of all these structural provincial elements along the main Roman axes of communication and transport in an area that was the most densely populated region of the Dacian Kingdoms. Our excavations will aim at evaluating the importance and impact of the proximity of the main axis of movement, communication and commerce on the Roman provincial rural life, and its evolution through time. This extraordinary environment and its associated monuments, settlements and material culture, combined with spectacular surrounding natural landscapes and beautiful Transylvanian churches and castles, guarantees all students and volunteers with an incredible archaeological and cultural experience.

Period(s) of Occupation: Roman (Imperial, Provincial), Late Iron Age

Project size: 
1-24 participants

Minimum Length of Stay for Volunteers: 2 weeks

Minimum age: 
18

Experience required: 
Training in excavation, survey and processing provided. Various lectures will be offered throughout the program.

Room and Board Arrangements

We house everyone in double or triple occupancy rooms in the village houses. Every house is equipped with bathrooms. You will be guests of Romanian families and will have a chance to discover the true sense of old fashion Transylvanian hospitality. You will experience some of the nicest aspects of Eastern European country life, indulging in your guest families home made cookies and a variety of  home made traditional  beverages. Generally speaking, you will have all the advantages of a country life with the comfort of an urban environment.
Breakfast and dinner is included during the work week and we will eat as a team in one of the local restaurants. Students are responsible for their own lunches in the field. Beaware that Romanian cuisine is generally meat oriented (although we do our best to satisfy vegetarians as well).

Cost: 
$1,585 ($450 per weeks for short stays)

Academic Credit

Name of institution offering credit: 
Archaeological Techniques and Research Center
Number of credits offered: none

Location

Contact Information
Dr. A. Gonciar
92 Fishburne St.
Charleston
SC
USA
29403-4778
Recommended Bibliography: 

Alicu, D.  & Adela Paki, 1995. Town Planning and Population in Ulpia Traiana Sarmizegetusa. BAR IS 605, Oxford.

Ciugudean, D., 2001. Workshops and manufacturing techniques at Apulum (2nd and 3rd century AD). British International Series, 937:61-72.

De Sena, E.C., and H. Dobrzanska (eds.), 2011. The Roman Empire and beyond : archaeological and historical research on the Romans and native cultures in Central Europe. Oxford: Archaeopress.

Diaconescu, A., 2004. The towns of Roman Dacia: an overview of recent archaeological research. In W.S. Hanson and I.P. Haynes (eds.), 2004. Roman Dacia: the Making of a Provincial Society. Portsmouth: Journal of Roman Archaeology, Supplementary Series, 56.

Haynes, I.P., and W.S. Hanson, 2004. An introduction to Roman Dacia. In W.S. Hanson and I.P. Haynes (eds.), 2004. Roman Dacia: the Making of a Provincial Society. Portsmouth: Journal of Roman Archaeology, Supplementary Series, 56.

Hanson, W.S. and I.P. Haynes (eds.), 2004. Roman Dacia: the Making of a Provincial Society. Portsmouth: Journal of Roman Archaeology, Supplementary Series, 56.

Lockyear, K., 2004. The Late Iron Age background to Roman Dacia. In W.S. Hanson and I.P. Haynes (eds.), 2004. Roman Dacia: the Making of a Provincial Society. Portsmouth: Journal of Roman Archaeology, Supplementary Series, 56.

Macrea, Mihai, 1969. Life in Roman Dacia. Bucharest.

Oltean, Ioana A., 2007. Dacia. Landscape, Colonisation, Romanisation. Routledge, London.

Oltean, I.A,, 2004. Rural settlement in Roman Dacia: some considerations. In W.S. Hanson and I.P. Haynes (eds.), 2004. Roman Dacia: the Making of a Provincial Society. Portsmouth: Journal of Roman Archaeology, Supplementary Series, 56.

Oltean, I.A. & W.S. Hanson, 2007. Villa settlement in Roman Transylvania. Journal of Roman Archaeology 20:113-137.

Opreanu, C.H., 2009. Chronology and cultural identity of the interaction zones over the frontiers of Roman Dacia. In O., Tentea, and I.C. Opris (eds.), Near and Beyond the Roman Frontiers. Bucharest: Center for Roman Military Studies, 5, pp. 129-150.

Opreanu, C.H., 2009. Chronology and cultural identity of the interaction zones over the frontiers of Roman Dacia. In O., Tentea, and I.C. Opris (eds.), Near and Beyond the Roman Frontiers. Bucharest: Center for Roman Military Studies, 5, pp. 129-150.

Ruscu, D. 2004. The supposed extermination of the Dacians: the literary tradition. In W.S. Hanson and I.P. Haynes (eds.), 2004. Roman Dacia: the Making of a Provincial Society. Portsmouth: Journal of Roman Archaeology, Supplementary Series, 56.

Tentea, O., and I.C. Opris (eds.), 2009. Near and Beyond the Roman Frontiers. Bucharest: Center for Roman Military Studies, 5.

Webster, J., 2001. Creolizing the Roman Provinces. American Journal of Archaeology, 105:209-225.

Weiss, D., 2011. Influence and observation: towards a more concrete understanding of the Roman-Dacian limes. In E.C. De Sena, and H. Dobrzanska (eds.), The Roman Empire and beyond : archaeological and historical research on the Romans and native cultures in Central Europe. Oxford: Archaeopress.