Sponsored by: Archaeological Institute of America
In this lecture we will look at how ancient Roman concrete differs from modern concrete and explore the reasons that the concrete structures of antiquity seem to have greater durability than our modern ones. Then we will examine the ways in which this new material was exploited by Roman architects and builders to create never-before-possible structures like the Colosseum, the Pantheon, and the imperial bath buildings. We will also look at the consequences that concrete construction had on an empire wide-scale. Not only did concrete allow the Roman to build bigger, it also changed aesthetic expectations and affected the trade routes throughout the Mediterranean.