Saturday, July 11, 2009
Gabii Project outing to Ostia Antica
A large contingent of the Gabii Project visited the archaeological site of Ostia Antica today, guided by Prof. Hilary Becker (Oberlin College), Evelyn Adkins (Michigan) and Andrew Johnston (Harvard). The group was thrilled to visit the site and is grateful to the Soprintendenza per i Beni Archeologici di Ostia for according our group a gratis entry to the site. An added point of excitement was that one of our team members, Allia Benner (Dartmouth), celebrated her 21st birthday by visiting Ostia - and was properly serenaded with a birthday song (in Latin) in Ostia's forum. The ruins of Ostia provide one of the most ideal classrooms, as it were, for the study of Imperial Roman urbanism, architecture, and society. With vast tracts of well preserved architectural remains, Ostia is an excellent place to stroll and observe archaeology up close. Of particular interest are building techniques and building types, along with a host of evidence for architecture and society in Imperial Ostia. During our visit this week the group considered not only the commercial and domestic architecture, but sacred architecture as well, including Mithraea in Ostia, the Campus of the Magna Mater, the Christian basilica, and the Jewish synagogue.