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COURSE NAME: "Ancient Rome and Its Monuments"
SEMESTER & YEAR: Fall 2023

INSTRUCTOR: Crispin Corrado
EMAIL: [email protected]
HOURS: TH2:15 PM 5:00 PM
PREREQUISITES: On-site; activity fee: €40 or $52
OFFICE HOURS: By Appointment

Rome City Series - This on-site course considers the art and architecture of ancient Rome through visits to museums and archaeological sites. The course covers the visual culture and architecture of Rome beginning with the Iron Age and ending with the time of Constantine. A broad variety of issues are raised, including patronage, style and iconography, artistic and architectural techniques, Roman religion, business and entertainment.
This course will familiarize students with the topography of the ancient city of Rome, while focusing on architectural development as Rome grew from hilltop village to world city (c. 753 B.C. – A.D. 337). Students will learn Roman building processes, building materials, and building types, as well as the changes in these aspects over the years and what those changes reflected about the current political and cultural transformations that Rome was experiencing. Students will also learn to appreciate Roman expression through building, and recognize the messages carried by individual examples and intended by individual commissioners. In addition, students will obtain a very good idea about the daily lives and movements of the Romans in and around their monuments, through close investigation of the public buildings, and the city itself. Finally, students will come away with a better understanding of what the Romans have left us in terms of physical and cultural legacy, and the many ways in which the ancient city of Rome has influenced the city over time. This course is held completely on-site around the city, and is arranged chronologically and by theme. At each class meeting we will investigate monuments in a different part of the city, and will discuss specific aspects of Roman life. The course will consider the major monuments in Rome, as well as materials used for building. Together the class will also visit the major museum collections in the city, in order to heighten understanding of Roman principles of ornamentation and memory preservation, as well as the original appearance of the ancient monuments and Roman spaces.
Students will consider several different types of evidence, including material culture and literary sources, which will allow and encourage them to think critically, and better understand the sites and monuments visited, as well as the role of the archaeologist in reconstructing the past. The written assignment will help improve research and communication skills.
Book TitleAuthorPublisherISBN numberLibrary Call NumberCommentsFormatLocal BookstoreOnline Purchase
A History of Roman ArtSteven L. TuckWiley Blackwell978-1119653288  Ebook  
Rome: An Oxford Archaeological GuideAmanda ClaridgeOxford University Press978-0199546831   Ebook  

Preparation and ParticipationStudents are expected to show up on time to class, ready to actively participate, and having completed the reading assignment for the day.10
Research PaperStudents will be asked to write a research paper in which they discuss one monument, or one monument type, in the ancient city. The paper should investigate a particular aspect of that monument/monument type, or discuss the monument/monument type from a particular point of view. The research paper should *not* be a simple presentation of the monument/monument type. It should be an academic discussion, including a thesis or proposed point you would like to make/demonstrate, with supporting arguments and evidence, as well as mention and explanation of specific examples. In the work, students should include discussion of the use of this monument type in Roman times, and should include passages written by the ancient authors, where possible. The papers should be 7 - 8 pages, double-spaced, exclusive of cover sheet, images section, and bibliography. They should include citations in the form of footnotes. In conducting research, students should use academic sources only (books and journal articles). Electronic databases, such as JSTOR, and other online academic resources, such as Perseus and www.ostia-antica.com, are acceptable and encouraged; other websites may not be consulted.30
Midterm Exam 30
Final Exam 30

AWork of this quality directly addresses the question or problem raised and provides a coherent argument displaying an extensive knowledge of relevant information or content. This type of work demonstrates the ability to critically evaluate concepts and theory and has an element of novelty and originality. There is clear evidence of a significant amount of reading beyond that required for the course.
BThis is highly competent level of performance and directly addresses the question or problem raised.There is a demonstration of some ability to critically evaluatetheory and concepts and relate them to practice. Discussions reflect the student’s own arguments and are not simply a repetition of standard lecture andreference material. The work does not suffer from any major errors or omissions and provides evidence of reading beyond the required assignments.
CThis is an acceptable level of performance and provides answers that are clear but limited, reflecting the information offered in the lectures and reference readings.
DThis level of performances demonstrates that the student lacks a coherent grasp of the material.Important information is omitted and irrelevant points included.In effect, the student has barely done enough to persuade the instructor that s/he should not fail.
FThis work fails to show any knowledge or understanding of the issues raised in the question. Most of the material in the answer is irrelevant.

One unexcused absence is permitted. Classes start on-site and thus punctuality is essential; three late arrivals will count as one unexcused absence.
As stated in the university catalog, any student who commits an act of academic dishonesty will receive a failing grade on the work in which the dishonesty occurred. In addition, acts of academic dishonesty, irrespective of the weight of the assignment, may result in the student receiving a failing grade in the course. Instances of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Academic Affairs. A student who is reported twice for academic dishonesty is subject to summary dismissal from the University. In such a case, the Academic Council will then make a recommendation to the President, who will make the final decision.
John Cabot University does not discriminate on the basis of disability or handicap. Students with approved accommodations must inform their professors at the beginning of the term. Please see the website for the complete policy.



Week 1:

Lecture: Course Introduction
Meeting Place: JCU, Classroom TBA

Week 2:
Lecture: Early Rome; City Boundaries, Death and Burial
Site Visits: Tiber and Tiber Island, Mouth of the Cloaca Maxima, Circus Maximus, the Servian Walls, the Pyramid, and the Aurelianic Walls
Tuck, Chapters 1 and 2, and Claridge, Introduction and Historical Overview, Glossary and Chronological Table
Meeting Place: In the middle of the Ponte Fabrizio (Pons Fabricius)

Week 3:
Lecture: The Roman Republic
Site Visits: The Lower Campus Martius, including the Theater of Pompey
Reading: Tuck, Chapter 3, and Claridge, Section “Field of Mars,” and individual entries appropriate for site visits
Meeting Place: Tower in Largo Argentina

Week 4:
Lecture: Roman Religion and the Roman Temple; Roman Building Methods and Materials
Site Visits: Largo Argentina, Capitoline Hill/Forum Temples, Forum of Caesar
Reading: Tuck, Chapter 4
Meeting Place: Tower in Largo Argentina

Week 5:
Lecture: Architecture Walk; The Triumphal Parade and Route
Site Visits: Forum Boarium, Theater of Marcellus, Porticus of Octavia, Excavations at Sant’Omobono, Circus Flaminius
Readings: Claridge, Section “Circus Flaminius to Circus Maximus,” and individual entries as appropriate for site visits
Meeting Place: Outside the church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin/La Bocca della Verita’

Week 6:
Lecture: Augustan Rome I
Site Visits: The Roman Forum and Palatine Hill
Readings: Tuck, Chapter 5, and Claridge, Sections “The Roman Forum,” “The Upper Via Sacra” and “The Palatine,” and individual entries as appropriate for site visits
Meeting Place: Entrance to the Roman Forum off the via dei Fori Imperiali at Largo Ricci (Salara Vecchia)

Week 7:
Lecture: Augustan Rome II and the Julio-Claudians, Roman Arts & Propaganda, Roman Roads and Commemorative Monuments; Rome’s Population, Society and Freedom
Site Visits: Augustus’ Horologium, the Ara Pacis & Claudian Altar, Augustus’ Mausoleum, via Flaminia
Readings: Augustus, Res Gestae (Online)
Meeting Place: In front of the Ara Pacis Augustae (Lungotevere in Augusta)

Week 8:
Meeting Place: JCU Classroom

Week 9:

Lecture: Roman Portraiture and Roman Wall Painting
Site Visits: Palazzo Massimo Museum
Reading: Tuck, Chapter 6
Meeting Place: In front of the Termini train station, outside the bookstore

Week 10:
Lecture: Rome of the Flavians; Public Venues
Site Visits: Colosseum, Ludus Magnus, Circus Maximus
Readings: Tuck, Chapter 7, and Claridge, Sections “Caelian Hill and the Inner Via Appia” and “Colosseum Valley and Esquiline Hill,” and individual entries as appropriate for site visits
Meeting Place: Beneath the Column of Trajan in Piazza Venezia

Week 11:
Lecture: Rome of Trajan and Hadrian, Roman Water Supply,
Site Visits: The Pantheon, The Markets and Forum of Trajan, Column of Marcus Aurelius, Temple of the Deified Hadrian, Stadium of Domitian, Tomb of Bibulus, The Imperial Fora, and the Forma Urbis Romae
Readings: Tuck, Chapters 8 and 9, and Claridge, “Imperial Forums,” and entries as appropriate to the site visits
Meeting Place: In front of the Pantheon

Week 12:
Lecture: Port Cities and Commerce
Site Visit: Ostia Antica
Readings: Tuck, Chapter 10, and www.ostia-antica.org for individual monuments
Meeting Place: At the café outside the Train Station (at the café), at the beginning of class

Week 13:

Lecture: Decline and Transformation: Rome from the Antonines through Constantine
Site Visits: The Arch of the Argentarii, the Capitoline Hill and Museums, including the Temple of Jupiter Optimus Maximus, Asylum, and the Tabularium
Readings: Tuck, Chapter 11, and Claridge, “Capitoline Hill,” and entries as appropriate for visits
Meeting Place: On the Campidoglio, beneath the statue of Marcus Aurelius

Week 14:
Lecture: Transformation to a Christian Rome; Review for Final Exam
Site Visits: Arch of Constantine, Baths of Caracalla
Readings: Tuck, Chapter 12, and Claridge, individual entries as appropriate for site visits
Meeting Place: At the Base of the Arch of Constantine, corner closest to the Colosseum


N.B. There may be a Friday make-up day if one of our classes is cancelled due to a holiday. Please check the JCU Academic Calendar for this semester in order to know if one of our classes will be cancelled, and, if so, when the make-up class will be held. Make-up classes are normal class sessions, and attendance is mandatory.