CLSC 333

Uncovering Roman Religion

Did Romans really sacrifice animals? Did catacombs really only start with Christianity? Were Vestal Virgins burned alive? Were there rituals in which people were drenched in blood? Popular movies and TV series have presented a very particular picture of Roman religion. Are these depictions are accurate? This course explores these questions and others through the study of the archaeology of religion in the city of Rome itself. The course focuses on the intricate relationship between religious activities and the topography of the surrounding city of Rome in the Republican and Imperial periods. Organized thematically, this archaelology course looks at the following topics: ?Sacred Space and Movement,? ?Temples: Architecuture, Design and Decoration,? ?Politics, the Military, and Religion,? ?Religion of the Dead,? and ?Foreign Influences.? The course focuses on the material remains of ritual from Republican and Imperial Rome and questions of preservation and innovation during these periods. Students gain a thorough understanding of the different types of archeological remains of religious activity and a familiarity with the topography and archaelolgy of the city of Rome.