A lecture on “Africa in the Roman Empire: Connectivity, Harbours, and the Economy”will be given by David Stone in the framework of the Rome in Bloomsbury lecture series, on the 22nd of October 2013.

The relationship between connectivity and economic activity is a subject of current debate in Mediterranean archaeology, and recent scholarship has shown the significance of this topic for North African studies. This paper approaches the issue through a body of evidence, artificial port structures (jetties, quays, enclosures, and breakwaters), which has hitherto been overlooked. The author identifies 29 definite, and 15 possible, structures between Cyrenaica and Mauretania, dating between the fourth century B.C.E and the sixth century C.E. demonstrating that the archaeological evidence for these structures is a more reliable source of information than the ancient literary evidence, and discussing how the picture drawn from latter has misled earlier scholars.

The lecture will take place at Dreyfus Room, Birkbeck, 28 Russell Square (enter via 26), London WC1B 5DQ.