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Following in Hadrian’s Footsteps: A Roman Summer
by Matt Hughes
Part 1: Exploring the Empire
Part 2: Archaeological Dig
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Following in Hadrian’s Footsteps: A Roman Summer by Matt Hughes

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Transcript of "Following in Hadrian’s Footsteps: A Roman Summer by Matt Hughes "

  1. 1. Following in Hadrian’s Footsteps: A Roman Summer by Matt Hughes Part 1: Exploring the Empire Part 2: Archaeological Dig Class of 2016 Hadrian was the Emperor of Rome from 117136 CE. During his reign he rebuilt the city of Athens, and managed to travel to every province of the Roman Empire, and he did this when Rome was at its greatest extent. As someone with a budding interest in the Roman Empire I decided to walk where Hadrian walked and visit a larger part of what was the Roman Empire in 117 CE. I was able to make it into 14 of the provinces. It was an incredible experience. I was able to visit the Roman cities of Londinium (London), Lutetia (Paris), Aquinicum (Budapest), Serdica (Sofia), Athenae (Athens), Thessalonica (Thessaloniki), and Turicum (Zurich) to name a few. The amazing thing about Europe is that the Roman Empire is everywhere. I was able to see Roman ruins stretching across the continent from London to Athens. Of course, I trekked to the heart of the Empire, Rome herself. Coupled with my extensive travel around the continent, I dedicated much of my free time to reading Edward Gibbon’s mammoth modern history of the Empire; The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. These experiences were incredible as I vastly enlarged my knowledge through primary and secondary sources on the Roman Empire. Roman Provinces Visited: Brittania Lungdunesis Germania Superior Raetia Noricum Pannonia Superior Pannonia Inferior Italia Dacia Moesia Superior Thracia Macdeonia Achaia Creta Roman Terme Diocletianopolis The second part of my project was based out of Hisarya, Bulgaria. Here I worked with the Hisar Archaeological Museum and Dr. Mitko Madjarov excavating a 2nd century CE Roman terme, or bathhouse. We dug for four weeks at the site for 5 hours per day. On the dig I learned how to identify different types of pottery and other artifacts, how to use various archaeological instruments including the Total Station and a program to document finds, and basic excavating techniques. Every day we took back out finds to the museum where we cleaned, labeled, and catalogued them. This was a painstakingly slow process but necessary if the artifacts were to be displayed in the museum. Over the four weeks we dug 2.13 meters (almost 7 feet) down uncovering a beautiful archway. We had to dig through the modern and medieval layers before we came to the Roman layer. Day 1 Small Finds Animal bone with cut marks Medieval belt buckle Day 29 Latin Epigraphy I also worked with Dr. Kalin Stoev and took his 2 week course on Latin Epigraphy, which deals with Latin inscriptions. I learned how to translate certain abbreviations as well as read rudimentary Latin inscriptions. This was a very cool experience for me and prompted me to take Latin this semester and study it more.
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