Research Programs: Fellowships for College Teachers and Independent Scholars

Period of Performance

6/1/2012 - 5/31/2013

Funding Totals

$50,400.00 (approved)
$50,400.00 (awarded)

Riots in Ancient Rome

FAIN: FB-55318-11

Gregory S. Aldrete
University of Wisconsin, Green Bay (Green Bay, WI 54311-7003)

This project is a comprehensive study of the frequent riots that broke out in ancient Rome during the Roman Republic and Empire. The resulting book will be the first to compile a database of all incidents of violent urban collective behavior at Rome, and will analyze their frequency, causes, characteristics, and effects. Particular attention will be paid to investigating issues of leadership, organization, and participation. In contrast to a traditional top-down scholarly perspective in which riots at Rome are often viewed as threats to public order that must be suppressed, this study will focus on their role as a means of communication for the urban populace and as manifestations of popular opinion. While the resultant scholarly book will be a specific case study, given that urban riots permeate all periods of history and continue to plague cities today, this project should have both broad appeal and relevance.

Associated Products

Reconstructing Ancient Linen Armor: Unraveling the Linothorax Mystery (Book)
Title: Reconstructing Ancient Linen Armor: Unraveling the Linothorax Mystery
Author: Alicia Aldrete
Author: Gregory S. Aldrete
Author: Scott Bartell
Abstract: Alexander the Great led one of the most successful armies in history and conquered nearly the entirety of the known world while wearing armor made of cloth. How is that possible? In Reconstructing Ancient Linen Body Armor, Gregory S. Aldrete, Scott Bartell, and Alicia Aldrete provide the answer. An extensive multiyear project in experimental archaeology, this pioneering study presents a thorough investigation of the linothorax, linen armor worn by the Greeks, Macedonians, and other ancient Mediterranean warriors. Because the linothorax was made of cloth, no examples of it have survived. As a result, even though there are dozens of references to the linothorax in ancient literature and nearly a thousand images of it in ancient art, this linen armor remains relatively ignored and misunderstood by scholars. Combining traditional textual and archaeological analysis with hands-on reconstruction and experimentation, the authors unravel the mysteries surrounding the linothorax. They have collected and examined all of the literary, visual, historical, and archaeological evidence for the armor and detail their efforts to replicate the armor using materials and techniques that are as close as possible to those employed in antiquity. By reconstructing actual examples using authentic materials, the authors were able to scientifically assess the true qualities of linen armor for the first time in 1,500 years. The tests reveal that the linothorax provided surprisingly effective protection for ancient warriors, that it had several advantages over bronze armor, and that it even shared qualities with modern-day Kevlar. Previously featured in documentaries on the Discovery Channel and the Canadian History Channel, as well as in U.S. News and World Report, MSNBC Online, and other international venues, this groundbreaking work will be a landmark in the study of ancient warfare.
Year: 2013
Primary URL: http://
Primary URL Description: Book's page on Press website
Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
Type: Multi-author monograph
ISBN: 9781421408194
Copy sent to NEH?: Yes