The Archaeology of Sanitation in Roman Italy

The Archaeology of Sanitation in Roman Italy : Toilets, Sewers, and Water Systems

3.84 (13 ratings by Goodreads)

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The Romans developed sophisticated methods for managing hygiene, including aqueducts for moving water from one place to another, sewers for removing used water from baths and runoff from walkways and roads, and public and private latrines. Through the archeological record, graffiti, sanitation-related paintings, and literature, Ann Olga Koloski-Ostrow explores this little-known world of bathrooms and sewers, offering unique insights into Roman sanitation, engineering, urban planning and development, hygiene, and public health. Focusing on the cities of Pompeii, Herculaneum, Ostia, and Rome, Koloski-Ostrow's work challenges common perceptions of Romans' social customs, beliefs about health, tolerance for filth in their cities, and attitudes toward privacy. In charting the complex history of sanitary customs from the late republic to the early empire, Koloski-Ostrow reveals the origins of waste removal technologies and their implications for urban health, past and present.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 352 pages
  • 156 x 235 x 25.91mm | 598.74g
  • Chapel Hill, United States
  • English
  • 28 drawings, 64 halftones, 8 maps
  • 1469621282
  • 9781469621289
  • 731,491

Review quote

A spirited, insightful, and eagerly-awaited monograph. . . . Effectively makes the case for an interdisciplinary approach to toilets and sanitation in any time period.--Classical Journal Extremely helpful for anyone wanting to approach the study of ancient sanitation and is essential for any serious student of the Ancient Roman World.--Canadian Journal of History Invaluable. . . . A thoughtful investigation of an essential aspect of Roman civilization. Highly recommended.--Library Journal [A]. . . passionate account of the toilets and sewers of Roman Italy.--Times Literary Supplement [Professor Koloski-Ostrow's] book is a dense scholarly examination of sanitation in Ancient Rome, but is also chalked full of thought-provoking insights and insightful research about everyday life's most private behavior.--United Nations of Roma Victrix If shelf space allows only one book on Roman toilets, this is it.--CHOICE Like all the best ancient history, [this book] provides rigorous engagement with our own assumptions about then and about now.--The Spectator
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About Ann Olga Koloski-Ostrow

Ann Olga Koloski-Ostrow is Professor and Chair of Classical Studies at Brandeis University, USA, and Co-Director of Graduate Studies for the Program in Ancient Greek and Roman Studies, and affiliate faculty in Anthropology, Fine Arts, and Women and Gender Studies. She has won several teaching awards both at Brandeis and nationally.
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Rating details

13 ratings
3.84 out of 5 stars
5 31% (4)
4 31% (4)
3 31% (4)
2 8% (1)
1 0% (0)
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