Contribution to the study of Roman trade. The tabernae.

Auteur Sergio MARTIN VIME
Directeur /trice Véronique Dasen, Universite de Fribourg
Co-directeur(s) /trice(s) Pedro Mateos, Instituto de Arqueología de Mérida, Spain.
Résumé de la thèse

The commerce is one of the main causes of the economic development at the Roman Empire. We can notice the success of this phenomenon in the spread of the tabernae through all the empire. The taberna is the space in which retail trade took place, most of the times together with the production of the items sold there and the shelter of the individuals working on it.

The tabernae could house a wide variety of activities, including the elaboration and trade of every kind of artifacts –bread, cloths, garum- and a large range of services, from the cleaning of fabrics or the disposal of warm food and drinks to the sale of jewels or perfumes for the elite.

My research started with the study of the tabernae in Italy, where a number of archaeological sites –Rome, Ostia Antica, Herculaneum, Pompeii- present a large disposition of these antique commercial facilities. Knowing the operation of this units in Italy I started to study its distribution in the western provinces of the Roman Empire, especially in the Iberian Peninsula.

The core of my research is the study of the tabernae in three archaeological sites in Hispania: Ampurias, Baelo Claudia and Conimbriga. The investigation requires the elaboration of a catalogue registering in detail each one of these units in order to gather as much information as possible. This catalogue will present different elements in a standardized database, including: architectural types, location, features which can identify the function of the space, elements of material culture that were used by individuals living or working in these units…

The analysis of all these parameters will lead the study to a series of conclusions that will shed light on the field or the retail trade. This research will help to broad the knowledge of social and economic aspects of the Roman Empire.


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