Earthen Architecture and Technological Change at Poggio Civitate Public Deposited

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  • March 20, 2019
  • Moore, Daniel W.
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Classics
  • The use of terracotta tiles to roof buildings in central Italy began during the mid-7th c. BC. This development is usually attributed to the recent arrival of Greek colonists from Corinth into peninsular Italy. The present study examines the architectural evidence from one of the first sites in Etruria to use terracotta tiles for roofing, the 7th c. BC complex at Poggio Civitate. The architecture at this site represents a mix of Italic and Near Eastern building techniques: the wattle-and-daub construction typical of northern Italy was used alongside the Near Eastern construction techniques of mudbrick and hydraulic mortar in an effort to support the first iteration of terracotta tiled roofs at the site. I argue that the appearance of these new technologies as a `package' - mudbrick, hydraulic mortar, and terracotta tiles - at Poggio Civitate at a time roughly contemporary with the earliest terracotta tiled roofs in Corinth suggests that the development of terracotta tiled roofs in Etruria was not the result of technological diffusion from Greek colonists to Etruscan natives. Rather, the architecture at Poggio Civitate indicates that the Etruscans played an active role in the innovation of the terracotta tiled roof in Italy. Furthermore, the presence of Near Eastern construction techniques alongside the development of this new technology suggests that the wide network of communication fostered by Etruscan elites aided technological progression during the 7th c. BC.
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  • In Copyright
  • "... in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the Department of Classics (Classical Archaeology)."
  • Sams, Kenneth
Place of publication
  • Chapel Hill, NC
  • Open access

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