The Macellum: Aims 2008
Our excavations of the Macellum (food market) started in 2005. The building, located on a lower terrace southeast of the Upper Agora, was dedicated in the years A.D. 180-191 by the local citizen P. Aelius Akulas in honor of the emperor Commodus. The complex was composed of a squarish courtyard framed on three sides by rows of shops, featuring a central tholos. During the previous campaigns, shops and storage rooms in the western-southwestern part of the building were excavated, as well as the central courtyard with the tholos.
The aims for the 2008 campaign are as follows:
- The excavation area toward the southwest, excavated in 2007, will be extended in order to better document the drainage facilities connected to two runoff water tunnels found there.
- The documentation and excavation of the east portico: the large amount of collapsed architectural debris that once belonged to the east portico was partly registered and removed by architects in 2007. This documentation work will be resumed during the 2008 campaign and the area will be excavated.
Furthermore, we will excavate the northern half eastern row of shops, as well as the northern half of the building. The shops especially should provide more material for the contextual analysis of the artefacts and remains (involving the study of ceramic, glass, metal, micro- and macrobotanical, and faunal remains), in order to document the function of the different rooms and possible functional changes of these spaces through time (i.e. artisanal activities, presence of dumps). Also, we will continue the overall documentation of the original construction date of the building, as well as the later phases of repairs, encroachment, abandonment and collapse processes.