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ARTH202: Art of Ancient Greece and Rome

  • Unit 5: Rome: The Empire  

    The expansion of Rome saw the emergence of new building technologies, the achievement of startling engineering feats, and notable developments in urban planning. The Art of the Empire glorified the emperor, but also the state and social structure. In the third century, the Empire was divided from within and weakened by numerous invasions. In 323, Constantine, the first Christian emperor, moved the empire’s capital to Byzantium, leaving the “Western Empire” to its decline.

    Unit 5 Time Advisory

    This unit will take approximately 31 hours to complete. 

    ☐ Subunit 5.1: 8 hours

    ☐ Subunit 5.2: 1.5 hours

    ☐ Subunit 5.3: 3.5 hours

    ☐ Subunit 5.4: 3.5 hours

    ☐ Subunit 5.5: 1 hour

    ☐ Subunit 5.6: 11 hours

    ☐ MET Reading: 1 hour

    ☐ The Open University Reading: 10 hours

    ☐ Subunit 5.7: 2.5 hours

    Unit5 Learning Outcomes

    Upon successful completion of this unit, the student will be able to:

    • Define certain terms relating to the Roman Empire.
    • Trace the general timeline of the Roman Empire.
    • Explain how important historical developments and social-historical contexts had an impact on the evolution of the Roman Empire’s art.
    • Link important historical and artistic developments of the Etruscans and the Roman Republic to specific geographical contexts.
    • Identify the important stylistic and technical developments of the art of the Roman Empire.
    • Recognize and discuss important artworks from the Roman Empire.
  • 5.1 The Roman Empire  

    • Web Media: The Open University’s “The Roman Empire: Introducing Some Key Terms”

      Link: The Open University’s “The Roman Empire: Introducing Some Key Terms” (HTML)
                
      Instructions: Please go to the link above.  From the table of contents situated on the webpage’s left pane, go through all of the sub-units of this unit. View the webpages themselves as well as the linked documents and videos.

      Terms of Use: This resource is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike License: you may share and adapt the work under the conditions that you correctly attribute it, that you do not use it for commercial purposes, and, that in the case you adapt and distribute it, you do so under a similar license.

    • Lecture: Lisa M. Lane’s “Lisahistory: The Roman Empire”

      Link: Lisa M. Lane’s “Lisahistory: The Roman Empire” (HTML and Adobe Flash)

      Instructions: Please watch and listen to this lecture (approximately 1 hour and 5 minutes), which will introduce you to the Roman Empire. Pay particular attention to discussion of Roman cities, streets, and structures.

      Terms of Use: This open educational resource is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike: you may share and adapt the work under the conditions that you correctly attribute it, that you do not use it for commercial purposes, and, that in the case you adapt and distribute it, you do so under a similar license.

  • 5.2 Art and Power: The Emperors  

    • Reading: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: Christopher Lightfoot’s “The Roman Empire (27 B.C.-393 A.D.)”

      Link: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: Christopher Lightfoot’s “The Roman Empire (27 B.C.-393 A.D.)” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please read this article, leaving out the last paragraph, and view the images that accompany this overview by clicking on the thumbnail images located above the article.  Read the articles that accompany the visuals. 

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

    • Reading: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: The Department of Greek and Roman Art’s “Augustan Rule (27 B.C.-14 A.D.)”

      Link: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: The Department of Greek and Roman Art’s “Augustan Rule (27 B.C.-14 A.D.)” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please read this article, and view the images that accompany it by clicking on the thumbnail images located above the article.  Read the articles that accompany the visuals. 

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.  

  • 5.3 Rome’s Design and Buildings before Constantine: Center of an Empire  

  • 5.3.1 Augustus: Rome as a Work of Art to the Glory of the Empire  

    • Lecture: YouTube: Yale University: Diana Kleiner’s “Roman Architecture: From Brick to Marble: Augustus Assembles Rome”

      Link: YouTube: Yale University: Diana Kleiner’s “Roman Architecture: From Brick to Marble: Augustus Assembles Rome” (YouTube)

      Also available in:
      HTML

      Mp3
      iTunes U

      Instructions: Please listen to and watch this lecture from the 20 minute mark up to the 53 minute mark. Dian Kleiner discusses the transformation of Rome under Augustus, its first emperor. Take careful notes on discussion of the forum.

      This lecture is made available through Open Yale Courses, a series of open, free lectures by Yale faculty.

      Terms of Use: Diana Kleiner, Roman Architecture, (Yale University: Open Yale Courses), http://oyc.yale.edu (Accessed March 7, 2011) License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 3.0. The original version can be found here.

  • 5.3.2 Architectural Theory in the Time of Augustus: Vitruvius  

    • Reading: Tufts University: Perseus Projects’ version of Vitruvius’ Ten Books of Architecture: “Preface for Part I,” “Preface for Part II,” “Preface for Part III,” “Book I: Chapter I: The Education of the Architect: Section 3,” “Book I: Chapter 2: The Fundamental Principles of Architecture,” “Book I: Chapter 3: Section I,” “Book I: Chapter 3: Section 2,” and “Introductions.” Note: Vitruvius’ “De architect

      Links: Tufts University: Perseus Projects’ version of Vitruvius’ Ten Books of Architecture: “Preface I” “Preface II” and “Preface III” “Book I: Chapter 1: The Education of the Architect: Section 3,” and “Book I: Chapter 2: The Fundamental Principles of Architecture,” “Book I: Chapter 3: The Departments of Architecture,” and “Introductions

      Note: All websites in HTML format.

      Also available in:

      Kindle (\$0.99)
      Google Books
      PDF

      Instructions: Click on the links and read “Preface I,” Preface II,” and “Preface III” for Vitruvius’ dedication of the book to Augustus. Then, read “Book I: Chapter 1: The Education of the Architect: Section 3” in order to get a sense for the role of the architect according to Vitruvius. Next, using the table of contents situated on the webpage’s left pane, read “Book 1: Chapter 2: The Fundamental Principles of Architecture” section 1 through 9. Take notes on Vitruvius’ theories concerning the relationship between architecture and the human body; the ideals that govern the art of architecture; the way Greek orders are and should be used; and the relationship among a structure, its site, and its function. Afterwards, again using the table of contents, read both section of “Book I: Chapter 3: The Departments of Architecture.” Lastly, the “Introductions” link takes you to section 1 of Book II’s introduction. Read through all of the Book II’s Introduction sections, and use the table of contents to select and read the introductions for Books III through X (Preface I through III served as Book I’s introduction).

      Terms of Use: This open educational resource is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License: you may share and adapt the work under the conditions that you correctly attribute it, and, that in the case you adapt and distribute it, you do so under a similar license.

  • 5.3.3 Vespasian and Titus’ Colosseum  

    • Web Media: YouTube: SmartHistory.org’s “Colosseum”

      Link: YouTube: SmartHistory.org’s “Colosseum” (YouTube)

      Also available in:
      Adobe Flash

      Instructions: Please watch this video on the Colosseum (approximately 8:30 minutes). Take notes on everything relating to the structure’s original context of creation, its function, its design, its relation to Greek amphitheater architecture, its use of specifically Roman techniques and materials, and its Roman character.

      Terms of Use: This open educational resource is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike: you may share and adapt the work under the conditions that you correctly attribute it, that you do not use it for commercial purposes, and, that in the case you adapt and distribute it, you do so under a similar license.

  • 5.3.4 Emperor Hadrian’s Pantheon  

    • Web Media: YouTube: SmartHistory.org’s “The Pantheon, Rome”

      Link: YouTube: SmartHistory.org’s “The Pantheon, Rome” (YouTube)

      Also available in:
      Adobe Flash

      Instructions: Please watch this 8-minute video on the Pantheon, a structure built to house statues of gods during the era of the Empire. The Pantheon is renowned for its architectural innovations. Take notes on everything relating to the temple’s context of creation, structure, use of material, and content.

      Terms of Use: This open educational resource is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike: you may share and adapt the work under the conditions that you correctly attribute it, that you do not use it for commercial purposes, and, that in the case you adapt and distribute it, you do so under a similar license.

  • 5.3.5 Portus  

    • Web Media: Humbox’s “Portus”

      Link: Humbox’s “Portus” (Adobe Flash)

      Instructions: Click on “Download” below the screen to launch the video. Please watch this short video on archeological research conducted in Portus (Rome’s main port in ancient times). Please pay careful attention to the discussion of the city’s original function and role, the building techniques used in its construction, and the ways in which archeologists use fieldwork and 3D imagery to understand and bring ancient structures back to life.

      Terms of Use: This open educational resource is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-NonDerivative: you may share the work under the conditions that you correctly attribute it, that you do not use it for commercial purposes, and, that you do not alter or build upon it.

  • 5.3.6 Homes  

    • Web Media: iTunes U: The Open University Podcasts: “Imperial Rome and Ostia: Insulae”

      Link: iTunes U: The Open University Podcasts: “Imperial Rome and Ostia: Insulae” (iTunes)

      Instructions: Please scroll down to track 15, and click on “View in iTunes” to launch the video. Watch this short, 5-minute video, available through iTunes. It will give you an idea for the types of buildings that the Roman population lived in.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

    • Web Media: Vroma.org: Barbara F McManus’s “Sample Plan of a Roman House”

      Link: Vroma.org: Barbara F McManus’s “Sample Plan of a Roman House” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please read the webpage above, and click on the different sections of the plan to learn more about the uses of each room. 

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

    • Reading: The British Museum’s “The Roman House”

      Link: The British Museum’s “The Roman House” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please read this short passage that differentiates the dwellings of the Roman commoners from those of wealthier Romans.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 5.4 Sculpture in the Roman Empire before Constantine  

  • 5.4.1 Monuments: Symbolism through Specificity of Events and Figures  

    • Lecture: YouTube: Yale University: Diana Kleiner’s “Roman Architecture: From Brick to Marble: Augustus Assembles Rome”

      Link: YouTube: Yale University: Diana Kleiner’s “Roman Architecture: From Brick to Marble: Augustus Assembles Rome” (YouTube)

      Also available in:

      HTML

      Mp3
      iTunes U

      Instructions: Please watch and listen to this lecture from the 52 minute mark through the end for a discussion of the “Ara Pacis Augustae,” an altar built in honor of Augustus. 

      Terms of Use: Diana Kleiner, Roman Architecture, (Yale University: Open Yale Courses), http://oyc.yale.edu (Accessed March 7, 2011) License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 3.0. The original version can be found here.

    • Web Media: YouTube: SmartHistory.org’s “The Arch of Titus”

      Link: YouTube: SmartHistory.org’s “The Arch of Titus” (YouTube)

      Also available in:
      Adobe Flash

      Instructions: Please watch this 5-minute video on the Arch of Titus, a monument commissioned by Emperor Domitian in honor of his brother’s victories. Take notes on the arch’s original function and context of creation; its form and structure; and the style, form, and content of its relief sculptures.

      Terms of Use: This open educational resource is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike: you may share and adapt the work under the conditions that you correctly attribute it, that you do not use it for commercial purposes, and, that in the case you adapt and distribute it, you do so under a similar license.

    • Web Media: YouTube: SmartHistory.org’s “Column of Trajan”

      Link: YouTube: SmartHistory.org’s “Column of Trajan” (YouTube)

      Also available in:
      Adobe Flash

      Instructions: Please watch this 5-minute video on the Column of Trajan, a column built in honor of Emperor Trajan’s victories in the Dacian Wars. Take notes on the original intent behind the creation of the column, its structure, what it depicts, how it glorifies Trajan, and how it expresses ideas of empire. 

      Terms of Use: This open educational resource is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike: you may share and adapt the work under the conditions that you correctly attribute it, that you do not use it for commercial purposes, and, that in the case you adapt and distribute it, you do so under a similar license.

  • 5.4.2 Equestrian Statues  

    • Web Media: YouTube: SmartHistory.org’s “Equestrian Sculpture of Marcus Aurelius”

      Link: YouTube: SmartHistory.org’s “Equestrian Sculpture of Marcus Aurelius” (YouTube)

      Also available in:
      Adobe   Flash

      Instructions: Please watch this 4-minute video on the equestrian sculpture of Marcus Aurelius, a bronze sculpture produced around the year 176 A.D. Take notes on its form and content. 

      Terms of Use: This open educational resource is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike: you may share and adapt the work under the conditions that you correctly attribute it, that you do not use it for commercial purposes, and, that in the case you adapt and distribute it, you do so under a similar license.

  • 5.4.3 The “Augustus Prima Porta” and Imperial Sculpture  

    • Reading: Suny College at Oneonta: Dr. Allen S. Farber’s “Roman Power and Roman Imperial Sculpture”

      Link: Suny College at Oneonta: Dr. Allen S. Farber’s “Roman Power and Roman Imperial Sculpture” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please read this passage on Roman Imperial Sculpture, taking especially careful notes on the Prima Porta statue of Augustus. The passage additionally discusses the “Ara Pacis;” it is recommended that you also read that section to reinforce what you learned earlier in this course.

      Terms of Use: Please respect the terms of use and copyright of the webpage above.

  • 5.4.4 Portraiture  

    • Reading: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: Rosemarie Trentinella’s “Roman Portrait Sculpture: Republican through Constantinian”

      Link: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: Rosemarie Trentinella’s “Roman Portrait Sculpture: Republican through Constantinian” (HTML)

      Instructions: You have viewed this webpage earlier in the course, while studying Republican art.  Please read this article again, this time focusing on the last two paragraphs. View the images that accompany this overview by clicking on the thumbnail images situated above the text.  Read the articles that accompany the photographs of the artworks that were made in the era of the Roman Empire. 

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 5.4.5 Sarcophagi  

    • Reading: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: Heather T. Awan’s “Roman Sarcophagi”

      Link: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: Heather T. Awan’s “Roman Sarcophagi” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please read this article on the ornamentation of Roman Sarcophagi. View the images accompanying the text by clicking on the thumbnail photographs situated above the article itself. Please read the articles accompanying the images. 

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 5.5 Painting in the Roman Empire Before Constantine  

    • Reading: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: The Department of Greek and Roman Art’s “Roman Painting”

      Link: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: The Department of Greek and Roman Art’s “Roman Painting” (HTML)

      Instructions: You have already viewed this article in the section devoted to “Painting in the Roman Republic.” Please re-read the paragraphs describing the third and fourth styles of painting, and view the photographs that accompany this overview by clicking on the thumbnail images situated above the text. Read the articles that accompany the photographs. 

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

    • Reading: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: The Department of Greek and Roman Art’s “The Augustan Villa at Boscotrecase”

      Link: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: The Department of Greek and Roman Art’s “The Augustan Villa at Boscotrecase” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please read this article on the painted decoration of a luxurious villa built in the time of Augustus. View the photographs that accompany this overview by clicking on the thumbnail images situated above the text.  Read the articles that accompany the photographs. 

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

  • 5.6 Roman Provinces  

    • Reading: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: Jean Sorabella’s “Art of the Roman Provinces, 1-500 A.D.”

      Link: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: Jean Sorabella’s “Art of the Roman Provinces, 1-500 A.D.” (HTML)

      Instructions: Please read this article, and view the images that accompany it by clicking on the thumbnail images located above the article.  Read the articles that accompany the visuals. 

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

    • Reading: The Open University’s “Exploring a Roman-African City: Thugga”

      Link: The Open University’s “Exploring a Romano-African City: Thugga” (HTML)
                
      Instructions: Please go to the link above.  From the table of contents situated on the left pane of the webpage, go through all the sub-units of this unit. View the webpages as well as the linked documents and videos and then complete the suggested exercises.

      Terms of Use: This resource is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike License: you may share and adapt the work under the conditions that you correctly attribute it, that you do not use it for commercial purposes, and, that in the case you adapt and distribute it, you do so under a similar license.

  • 5.7 Art of the Late Empire  

    • Reading: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: Christopher Lightfoot’s “The Roman Empire (27 B.C.-393 A.D.)”

      Link: The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History: Christopher Lightfoot’s “The Roman Empire (27 B.C.-393 A.D.)” (HTML)

      Instructions: You have viewed this webpage in subunit 5.2. Please re-read this article, this time focusing on the last two paragraphs, and view the last five thumbnail images located above the article. Read the articles that accompany the visuals. 

      Terms of Use: Please respect the copyright and terms of use displayed on the webpage above.

    • Web Media: SmartHistory.org: Valentina Follo, Dr. Beth Harris, and Dr. Steven Zucker’s “Arch of Constantine”

      Link: SmartHistory.org: Valentina Follo, Dr. Beth Harris, and Dr. Steven Zucker’s “Arch of Constantine” (Adobe Flash and HTML)

      Instructions: Please watch this video (11 minutes) and then read the following article discussing the Arch of Constantine, which was built in Rome in honor of Constantine in 315 A.D. Take notes on the historical context of its creation. Be sure that you are able to discuss what the arch commemorates and identify its structural elements as well as the style, form, and content of its relief sculptures. Please also take notes on the way Constantine chose to represent himself.

      Terms of Use: This open educational resource is licensed under a Creative Common Attribution-Noncommercial-ShareAlike: you may share and adapt the work under the conditions that you correctly attribute it, that you do not use it for commercial purposes, and, that in the case you adapt and distribute it, you do so under a similar license.

    • Lecture: YouTube: Yale University: Diana Kleiner’s “Roman Architecture: Rome of Constantine and a New Rome”

      Link: YouTube: Yale University: Diana Kleiner’s “Roman Architecture: Rome of Constantine and a New Rome” (YouTube)

      Also available in:
      iTunes U
      HTML

      Mp3
       
      Instructions: Please listen to this lecture on the artistic commissions made under Constantine’s rule. Viewing this lecture should take approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes.

      Terms of Use: Diana Kleiner, Roman Architecture, (Yale University: Open Yale Courses), http://oyc.yale.edu (Accessed March 7, 2011) License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA 3.0. The original version can be found here.