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ARCH 0405 State of Siege! Walls and Fortifications in the Greek and Roman World

Warfare was endemic in the ancient world, and walls were therefore ubiquitous. This course will examine the most spectacular fortifications of the Graeco-Roman world, from Bronze Age citadels in Greece to the Roman frontiers. We will learn how to build walls and fortresses, how to defend them, and how to breach them by studying some of the best walls and famous sieges of Antiquity.

MWF 2:00-2:50.

Instructor: Sylvian Fachard.

Week 1. Introduction. Why Build Walls?

Week 2. The Origins: The Near East.

Week 3. Building Mycenaean Fortifications without the Cyclops.

Week 4. Geometric and Archaic Fortifications in the Greek World.

Week 5. Bring money and stonecutters! How to build a Greek city-wall.

Week 6. Siege Warfare during the Peloponnesian War.

Week 7. How to Survive under Siege in the 4th Century BCE.

Week 8. Siege Warfare in the Age of Alexander and his Successors.

Week 9. Roman Siege Warfare. 

Week 10 Building Forts and Fortresses for the Roman Army.

Week 11. Fortifying the Frontiers of Britain.

Week 12. Fortifying the Desert

Week 13. The Greco-Roman Heritage: from the Byzantines to the Crusaders.



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