Daily Life in Ancient Rome by Jérôme Carcopino

By Jérôme Carcopino

During this portrait of existence in old Rome, the writer starts through portray a backcloth on which the social, political, cultural and spiritual points of the neighborhood are drawn. He enlarges at the information of daily life, following the common regimen of a standard day from sunrise to dinner and the controversy that endured lengthy into the evening. This research, which incorporates a bibliography and notes by way of Professor Rowell, describes the homes and multi-storeyed residences of the town of over 1000000 population, the social periods from senators to slaves and the Roman relations and the placement of girls.

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By Jérôme Carcopino

During this portrait of existence in old Rome, the writer starts through portray a backcloth on which the social, political, cultural and spiritual points of the neighborhood are drawn. He enlarges at the information of daily life, following the common regimen of a standard day from sunrise to dinner and the controversy that endured lengthy into the evening. This research, which incorporates a bibliography and notes by way of Professor Rowell, describes the homes and multi-storeyed residences of the town of over 1000000 population, the social periods from senators to slaves and the Roman relations and the placement of girls.

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Certainly they frequently found genuine difficulty in meeting their obligations. 86 There were, then, differences between the two types of apartment house which are known by the common name of insula, but almost all resulted from the primary distinction between those houses where the ground floor formed a dornus and those in which it was let out in tabemae. The two types might be found side by side, and they obeyed the same rules in the internal arrangement and external appearance of their upper storeys.

85 Let us be honest with ourselves: we are amazed at this mixture of delicacy and coarseness, at the solemnity and grace of the decora­ tions and the familiarity of the actors. It is like nothing but the fifteenth-century madrasas in Fez, where the latrines were also designed to accommodate a crowd, and decorated with exquisitely delicate stucco and covered with a lacelike ceiling of cedar wood. Suddenly Rome - where even the latrines of the imperial palace, as majestic and ornate as a sanctuary beneath its dome, contained three seats side by side88 - Rome at once mystic and sordid, artistic and carnal, without embarrassment and without shame seems to join 53 DAILY LIFB IN ANCIBNT ROMB hands with the distant Haghrab at the epoch of the Merinids, so far removed from us in time and space.

Seen from the outside, all these monumental blocks of flats were more or less identical in appearance and presented a fairly uniform facade to the street. Piled storey upon storey, the large-bayed cenacula were superimposed one above the other; the first steps of their stone staircases cut through the line of the tabemae or the walls of the domus. Reduced to its governing essentials, the plan of these buildings is familiar. They might well be urban houses of today or yesterday. From a study of the best preserved of their ruins, the most competent experts have been able to reproduce on paper the original plan and elevation; and these drawings show such startling analogies with the buildings in which we ourselves live that at first sight we are tempted to mistrust them.

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