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ARCH 411 - Ancient Roman Architecture
According to the archaeologist Frank Brown, “the architecture of the Romans was, from first to
last, an art of shaping space around ritual.” This course will explore the architecture and
urbanism of Rome and its empire stretching over three continents from Scotland to Syria.
Against the cultural backdrop of ancient Italy and the Greek world, we will discuss Roman
monumental temples, feats of engineering, urban imagery, housing, patronage, and the
intersection of structure, material and form that characterizes Rome’s most salient contribution to
the history of art and architecture. In the process, we will explore how Roman architects and
their patrons literally reshaped the Mediterranean world, changing the way viewers related to
sacred and urban space, and establishing a vision for what it meant to make architectura.
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