The Urban domus in late antique Hispania:. examples from Emerita, Barcino and Complutum

Autores: Javier Arce Martínez, Alexandra Chavarría Arnau, Gisela Ripoll López

Publicación: Housing in Late Antiquity - From Palaces to Shops,, ISBN 978 9004125, 2007, pags. 305-336

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This paper examines the characteristics, evolution and decline of the late antique domus of Spanish towns, using case studies from three cities: Augusta Emerita, Complutum and Barcino. It discusses how, during the 4th c. A.D., urban town houses were dramatically renovated and lavishly redecorated according to the tastes of thcir owners, thc urban dites. These domus, which frequently replaced the public buildings and open spaces of the Early Roman era, acquired large, apsidal and basilical spaces, in many cases decorated with mosaics and paintings. This study also charts the decline of these domestic buildings, when, from the late 5th, and in some cases the 6th c., they were re-built using poorer materials, subdivided, or re-used for agricultural or funerary purposes.