Concrete Vaulted Construction in Imperial Rome: Innovations in Context

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Examining the methods and techniques that enabled builders to construct some of the most imposing monuments of ancient Rome, Lynne Lancaster focuses on structurally innovative vaulting and the factors that influenced its advancement, as well as a range of related practices and various techniques of buttressing. Providing the geological background of the local building stones, Lancaster applies mineralogical analysis to suggest trading patterns and land use. She also examines construction techniques in relation to the social, economic, and political contexts of Rome.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"...Lancaster's arguments mark a more sophisticated approach to the study of Roman architecture than has hitherto been possible...Indeed, books like these move us from archaeological monographs on particular monuments...or broad general texts on Roman architecture...toward an in-depth understanding of what Roman concrete, marble-clad buildings were designed to do, of what they did, and of the way in which their successes and failures influenced generations of later architects."
-James E. Packer, Northwestern University, Bryn Mawr Classical Review

"The book's clear prose style and the useful summaries at the end of each chapter make it very accessible to students, and it will be a very useful teaching tool' moreover, it is a surprisingly engrossing read."
-Ellen Swift, University of Kent, Canterbury

"This is one of the most important-and most readable-books on Roman Imperial construction, and by extension on Roman architecture, to have appeared in a long time. It should become a standard reference work in its field and be used and appreciated for decades[...]it is an essential and very welcome volume."
-James C. Anderson, Jr., The University of Georgia, American Journal of Archaeology

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521744362
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 3/9/2009
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 296
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 10.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Lynne Lancaster is Associate Professor of Classics at Ohio University. A scholar of Roman archaeology and architecture, she has been awarded fellowships from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, the M. Aylwin Cotton Foundation, and the American Academy in Rome.

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Table of Contents

1. Introduction; 2. Centering and formwork; 3. Ingredients: mortar and caementa; 4. Amphoras in vaults; 5. Vaulting ribs; 6. Metal clamps and tie bars; 7. Vault behavior and buttressing; 8. Structural analysis: history and case studies; 9. Innovations in context.

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