Roman aqueduct carbonates: Palaeoenvironmental reconstructions and water management
Online e Maison Française d’Oxford
16 February 2023 - 17 February 2023
Ancient aqueducts and related structures can in a sense be brought back to life through study of the carbonate incrustations that formed during their periods of use. These laminated deposits precipitated over decades or centuries, and reflect periodic changes in temperature, discharge, and water composition. From them we can reconstruct usage chronologies, and breaks in the sequence of deposition may record events such as channel cleaning, or earthquake damage. Aqueduct carbonates are thus archives from which we can learn about past environmental conditions and water-management activities including responses to drought and earthquake. Carbonate deposits are therefore of interest to a wider community to understand resilience and persistence in ancient societies.
The goal of this workshop is to bring together different studies, disciplines, ideas, and perspectives to assess the state of the field in research on carbonates in ancient hydraulic structures; to explore the limits of the possible in this area, and develop a research agenda for the future. It aims also to increase wider awareness of aqueduct carbonate studies and their applicability to historical questions of ancient water management and human response to environmental change.
Convened by Gül Sürmelihindi (Marie Skłodowska-Curie AQUEA – School of Archaeology, Oxford), Julien Curie (CNRS, ArTeHis & ArScAn), Andrew Wilson (Institute of Archaeology / All Souls College), with Olivier Delouis (CNRS, MFO coordinator).