Macellum: Aims 2007
Excavations of the Macellum (food market) on a lower terrace southeast of the Upper Agora, started in 2005. The building was dedicated in A.D. 180-191 by P. Aelius Akulas, a local citizen, in honor of the emperor Commodus. The complex was composed of a squarish courtyard, framed on three sides by rows of shops, and featuring a central tholos.
Our aims for 2007 are as follows:
- Extension of the excavation area toward the southwest corner of the complex to explore and document the southern end of the west wing. The configuration of the central courtyard and the blocked door in the west wall of Room 3 suggest we will likely find additional rooms there.
- Extension of the excavation towards the southern boundary of the central courtyard. Our discovery last year of architectural fragments from the open portico bordering the courtyard on the south has triggered our interest for that unexpected part of the building. Further documentation of the portico should provide us with a better understanding of that part of the complex.
- Excavation of the Macellum's eastern wing will start this year, from the rows of shops at the back to the central tholos. The presence of steps, doorjambs, and well-preserved architectural fragments on the ground there suggests that that part of the building should be preserved as well as the west aisle excavated in 2005 and 2006.
- Documentation of the building's original construction date, as well as the later repairs, encroachment phases, and abandonment and collapse processes.
- Continuation of the contextual analysis of the artifacts and remains (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, etc.).