The road and rivers network within the Illyricum Digital Atlas (IllyrAtlas)
Francis Tassaux, Institut Ausonius, Université Bordeaux Montaigne
The Illyricum Digital Atlas, sets out this year, as an extension of AdriAtlas, the Antique Adriatic Digital Atlas. Like the latter, it will be made of a database connected to a geo-portal (WebGIS). Its goal is to cover the space between the Greek world and the Danube river, corresponding to the territories and the provinces of Dalmatia, Pannonia and Moesia Superior, from the II century BC and the Late Antiquity. It takes into account all the places named by the antique historical sources as well as all the sites having a certain importance under the historical and archaeological point of view. For example, beyond the set of the cities, it will include all forms of settlement of which we have a plan or a part of the plan. Every site will also have its own detailed file with images and bibliography. IllyrAtlas thus is, at once, an atlas, in the classical sense of the term, and an encyclopedia intended for everyone, published online under the open-access policy.
Within the database, together with the Map of the Sites, there will also be a Map of the Communication Routes, connected too to the geo-portal. This GIS will be much more complex to be compiled than the sites’ one. If drawing the road network on a 1:500.000 or 1:1.000.000 map does not pose a problem (even if many paths remain uncertain), the question is much more delicate on a multi-scale map. Since the user will be allowed to zoom in up to big and very big scales, this can lead to aberrant situations where the roads are drawn in acrobatic positions or cannot in any case be topographically acceptable.
It is therefore important to arrive to the precise geo-location of each road, that implies a very difficult work, that involves at once all the modern tools of survey (particularly Lidar and analysis of multi-spectral images) and the field data, both under constant updates, without leaving aside, the ancient written sources, literary and epigraphic and the medieval, modern and contemporary documentation.
Moreover, it is important to represent the certitude level of a path or of a segment of the road, as well as its hierarchic level (imperial road, secondary road, local road, …). Finally, we cannot forget the mapping of the navigable rivers, this too being complex enough, both on the scientific and on the technic plan.
To tackle these questions, a research group composed by the database expert Nathalie Prévôt, the geomatician Clément Coutelier and by Sara Zanni, post-doc Marie Skłodowska-Curie researcher, has been gathered at the Ausonius Institute.
De l’Adriatique aux Carpates : voies parallèles, chemins alternatifs, déviations routières
Vladimir Petrović, Mihai Popescu
Dans l’organisation des territoires, la mise en place de l’infrastructure de transport est une constante indispensable. Celle-ci s’appuie sur les réalités du relief, l’utilisation de chemins anciens, les informations humaines en vue de l’ouverture des voies stratégiques, militaires et commerciales, et leur aménagement.
Ainsi, pour supporter et suppléer un axe principal sont réalisées des voies parallèles, des dédoublements qui nécessitent de gros travaux comme le long de la côte Adriatique et dans les Portes de Fer. Le long des vallées sont bâties des voies de pénétration qui, selon les époques, prennent plus ou moins d’importance. Enfin, comme un symbole de l’aboutissement de l’infrastructure nécessaire à la mobilité, on note la création de déviations et de raccourcis.
Back to the Via Militaris east of the Via Nova Triana in Arabia
Chaim Ben David
In their pioneering publication Brünnow and Domaszewski noted several milestones east of the Via Nova Traiana, especially in southern Jordan. This information was repeated in Thomsen’s monumental paper on milestones, where he suggested that they were part of a continuous road that connected the military installations along the eastern limes. In the last decades the existence of this road between Amman and Udhruh east of the Via Nova Triana was accepted by Isaac and Parker. David Graf noted the fact that the above mentioned milestones are clustered near forts and camps and do not form a continuous line; he suggested that there was no connecting road between the sites and summarized his view by stating that “…The widely separated milestones in the proximity of Lejjun and Jurf ad-Darawish perhaps only marked the approaches to the military camps for travelers… In any case the finds are insufficient for postulating a continuous road between these distant points”. Our paper will deal with new information about road sections discovered along this presumed continuous road.
The roads of Roman Dacia. New research, new perspectives
In the last 15 years, our interest for the Roman roads has constanlty grew because new findings were recorded, together with new data concerning some important sectors of Roman roads. Therefore, our paper aim to present this new research. We will focus on the following topics: 1. The origin of the road network in Roman Dacia; 2. Epigraphic evidence regarding the road construction: the milestones; 3. Mapping the roads: evidence of former Roman roads in the modern maps: 4. Roads and the frontiers of Roman Dacia; 5. Forts and roads inside the province; 6. Who built the roads? Military troops involved in the road construction; 7. The road infrastructure of Roman Dacia: stationes and mansiones; 8. Cities, farmes and rural settlements: economy and Road infrastructure in Roman Dacia; 9. The faith of the Former Roman roads after the abandonement of Dacia.
Octavian’s Footprints: Hillforts, camps and roads between Burnum and Synodium
Željko Miletić, Silvia Bekavac
Based on the recent field survey of Petrovo polje, the Octavian war campaign against Delamate in the area between Burnum and Synodium is under consideration again. We are in search of two marching Roman military camps. The first one near village Parčić, is a part of a siege system by which Delmatian Promona was surrounding. The second camp above the villages of Otavice and Gradac we linked with the blockade of the Setovium hillforts situated on the southern slope of mountain Svilaja near village Baljci. Chronological stratification of the Roman road network between Burnum and Salona was considered, complemented by the recently discovered paths connecting the camps.
Beneficiarii consularis stationes along the Roman road Aquielia – Dyrrachium. State of research
The backbone of the traffic system in the province of Dalmatia was strategic military road from Aquileia to Dyrrachium which was the shortest route from mainland Italy to the eastern parts of the Em-pire. In that direction, on an important place in front of the Roman colonies Iader, Salona and Narona on the coast of Dalmatia, there was the Burnum – Bigeste system of Roman military camps. After the departure of the legions from Dalmatia and stabilization of the Danube limes second century AD, the roads in the province of Dalmatia did not lost its military significance. Road safety and supply control of the Danube limes after the departure of the le-gions were in the hands of the members of the auxiliary units and beneficiarii consularis which were deployed in stations on key routes.
Legionnaires from the Danube limes were usually deployed as beneficiarii consularis to the province of Dalmatia governor’s office after the legions would leave the province. At the beginning of the 2nd century there is no early confirmation of stations of beneficiarii consularis in the province of Dalmatia, although there are indications of such a station in Doclea where the beneficiarius consularis was a member of the VIII.
voluntariorum civium Romanorum cohort until the arrival of the legionnaires of the I. Adiutrix legion from the camp Brigetio at the Pannonia limes to the station in Doclea. A total of fifteen stations of beneficiarii consularis have been confirmed in the province of Dalmatia of which eight of them are deployed along Aquileia-Dyrrachium strategic road: Avendo, Burnum, Magnum, Pons Tiluri, Novae, Narona, Diluntum, Doclea.
None of the stations of beneficiarii consularis in the province of Dalmatia has been excavated and so all our knowledge comes from accidental finds of some fifty votive altars of beneficiarii consularis and comparisons with finds from other areas of the Empire, in particular with finds of excavated sanctuaries in stations of beneficiarii consularis on the Rhine limes and in Sirmium.
Based on in situ finds of beneficiarii votive altars, it is possible to try to approximate the micro-locations of stations of beneficiarii consularis along the Aquileia-Dyrrachium road in Burnum, Magnum and Novae by comparing the data with the locations of such facilities on the Rhine limes and especially with the location of the excavated station of beneficiarii consularis in Sirmium, which was located immediately along the western rampart of the city.
The Limes road in Croatia – Known data, new interpretation
Physical evidence of the Danube Limes road in Croatia are often described as scarce. What is believed is that that Roman road was built in the shortest way between the therein localities. However, due to latest archaeological discoveries and reinterpretation of certain old-ones, the distinguishment between Early and Late Roman, as well as military and civil sites in the area can today be made. With the use of Roman and latter itinerraries, findings and traces on the ground, mainly from Baranja territory, then archive and contemporary topography data and also the remains of regional milestones, a new view on the probable line of the Limes road and its relation to Danube sites in modern-day Republic of Croatia shall at present be introduced. While some of the Limes localities in the area seem to be built along the Roman magistral land-route, other could have been built only along the Danube water-way and act as end-points of mentioned road. Conclusively, author of this paper believes that a long section of branch-road, i. e. pathway, in the Country was by far mistakenly interpreted as a part of the main Limes road.
Die Bedeutung des Siedlungsplatzes Gamzigrad für das Sicherheitssystem der Provinz Dacia ripensis
Gerda Sommer v. Bülow
Die befestigte Anlage von Gamzigrad ist eines der besterhaltenen römischen Denkmäler in der Provinz Dacia ripensis. Durch seine geografische Lage kommt dem Ort wahrscheinlich eine wichtige strategische Funktion bei der Reorganisation des Verteidigungssystems an der unterden Donau nach der Aufgabe der dakischen Provinzgebiete zu. An Hand der Ergebnisse gemeinsamer serbisch-deutscher Forschungen im Umfeld des Galerius-Palastes soll diese Frage untersucht werden.
The road to be taken: a GIS-based analysis of the spatial and networking patterns pertaining to the Roman conquest of Sarmizegetusa Regia, Dacia
Ioana Oltean, João Fonte
The upland landscape surrounding the Iron Age Dacian capital of Sarmizegetusa Regia in the Orăştie Mountains (Romania) and the events which led to its conquest by Rome have long caught the attention of specialists and the wider public. However, the traditional research methodology applied until now left open considerable questions of its socio-historical dynamics, including our understanding of networking across a landscape lacking both historical sources and archaeological evidence for ancient roads. Based on existing high and mid-resolution topographic data and on the newly-available assessment of the Late Iron Age and early Roman archaeological landscape, this paper employs GIS-based spatial analysis (site location, mobility and visibility) of above-ground remote sensing data to understand the spatial relationships between Roman military bases, Dacian targets and the wider landscape. This will help formalise and test spatial and historical hypotheses, as an integral part of a wider interdisciplinary archaeological research in order to help build a better understanding of this iconic landscape.
Seek and ye shall find. A spatial approach to mapping Roman roads and buried archaeological sites in the Srem region. The case study of Tapavice site
Sara Zanni, Biljana Lučić, Alessandro De Rosa
The main goal of the “From Aquileia to Singidunum: reconstructing the paths of the Roman travellers – RecRoad” project, developed at Université Bordeaux Montaigne in collaboration with the Sremska Mitrovica Institute for Protection of Cultural Monuments was to detect and map the Roman thoroughfare connecting the Roman cities of Aquileia (Aquileia, Italy) and Singidunum (Belgrade, Serbia) using different sources and methods, including Sentinel-2 multispectral images, historical maps and surface survey results. The attention of this paper will focus on the methodologies applied to identify buried archaeological features and on the results obtained combining data coming from different kind of sources in the Tapavice site (Vojvodina, Serbia): in this area, an archaeological site was identified through remote sensing analysis, while its chronological framing was determined thanks the surface surveys on the ground. The pottery fragments collected show a time-span going from proto-history to the Roman period.