Roman Architecture - Video
By Diana E. E. Kleiner
To listen to an audio podcast, mouse over the title and click Play. Open iTunes to download and subscribe to podcasts.
(HSAR 252) This course is an introduction to the great buildings and engineering marvels of Rome and its empire, with an emphasis on urban planning and individual monuments and their decoration, including mural painting. While architectural developments in Rome, Pompeii, and Central Italy are highlighted, the course also provides a survey of sites and structures in what are now North Italy, Sicily, France, Spain, Germany, Greece, Turkey, Croatia, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, and North Africa. The lectures are illustrated with over 1,500 images, many from Professor Kleiner's personal collection. This course was recorded in Spring 2009.
|1||Video01 - Introduction to Roman Architecture||Professor Kleiner introduces the wide variety of Roman buildings covered in the course and links them with the theme of Roman urbanism. The lecture ranges from early Roman stone construction to such masterpieces of Roman concrete architecture as the ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|2||Video02 - It Takes a City: The Founding of Rome and the Beginnings of Urbanism in Italy||Professor Kleiner traces the evolution of Roman architecture from its beginnings in the eight-century B.C. Iron Age through the late Republican period. The lecture features traditional Roman temple architecture as a synthesis of Etruscan and Greek ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|3||Video03 - Technology and Revolution in Roman Architecture||Professor Kleiner discusses the revolution in Roman architecture resulting from the widespread adoption of concrete in the late second and first centuries B.C. She contrasts what she calls innovative Roman architecture with the more traditional ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|4||Video04 - Civic Life Interrupted: Nightmare and Destiny on August 24, A.D. 79||Professor Kleiner explores the civic, commercial, and religious buildings of Pompeii, an overview made possible only because of an historical happenstance--the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in A.D. 79, which buried the city at the height of its development.||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|5||Video05 - Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous: Houses and Villas at Pompeii||Professor Kleiner discusses domestic architecture at Pompeii from its beginnings in the fourth and third centuries B.C. to the eruption of Vesuvius in A.D. 79. She describes the plan of the ideal domus italica and features two residences that conform ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|6||Video06 - Habitats at Herculaneum and Early Roman Interior Decoration||Professor Kleiner discusses domestic architecture at Herculaneum and the First and Second Styles of Roman wall painting. The lecture begins with an introduction to the history of the city of Herculaneum and what befell some of its inhabitants when ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|7||Video07 - Gilding the Lily: Painting Palaces and Villas in the First Century A.D.||Professor Kleiner discusses the development of Third Style Roman wall painting in late first century B.C. villas belonging to the imperial family and other elite patrons. Third Style painting, as Professor Kleiner demonstrates, is characterized by departu||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|8||Video08 - Exploring Special Subjects on Pompeiian Walls||Professor Kleiner discusses special subjects in Roman wall painting that do not fall within the four architectural styles but were nonetheless inserted into their wall schemes: mythological painting, landscape, genre, still life, history painting, and...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|9||Video09 - From Brick to Marble: Augustus Assembles Rome||Professor Kleiner discusses the transformation of Rome by its first emperor, Augustus, who claimed to have found Rome a city of brick and left it a city of marble. The conversion was made possible by the exploitation of new marble quarries at Luna ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|10||Video10 - Accessing Afterlife: Tombs of Roman Aristocrats, Freedmen, and Slaves||Professor Kleiner explores sepulchral architecture in Rome commissioned by the emperor, aristocrats, successful professionals, and former slaves during the age of Augustus. Unlike most civic and residential buildings, tombs serve no practical purpose ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|11||Video11 - Notorious Nero and His Amazing Architectural Legacy||Professor Kleiner features the architecture of Augustus' successors, the Julio-Claudian emperors, whose dynasty lasted half a century (A.D. 14-68). She first presents Tiberius' magnificent Villa Jovis on the Island of Capri and an underground ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|12||Video12 - The Creation of an Icon: The Colosseum and Contemporary Architecture in Rome||Professor Kleiner features the tumultuous year of 68-69 when Rome had four competing emperors. Vespasian emerged the victor, founded the Flavian dynasty, and was succeeded by his sons, Titus and Domitian. The Flavians were especially adept at using archit||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|13||Video13 - The Prince and the Palace: Human Made Divine on the Palatine Hill||Professor Kleiner investigates the major architectural commissions of the emperor Domitian, the last Flavian emperor. She begins with the Arch of Titus, erected after Titus' death by his brother Domitian on land previously occupied by Nero's Domus ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|14||Video14 - The Mother of All Forums: Civic Architecture in Rome under Trajan||Professor Kleiner analyzes the major public architectural commissions of the emperor Trajan in Rome. Distinguished by their remarkably ambitious scale, these buildings mimic Trajan's expansion of the Roman Empire to its furthest reaches. Professor Kleiner||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|15||Video15 - Rome and a Villa: Hadrian's Pantheon and Tivoli Retreat||Professor Kleiner features the architecture built in and around Rome during the reign of Hadrian. The lecture begins with the Temple of Venus and Roma, a Greek-style temple constructed near the Colosseum in Rome, which may have been designed by ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|16||Video16 - The Roman Way of Life and Death at Ostia, the Port of Rome||Professor Kleiner focuses on Ostia, the port of Rome, characterized by its multi-storied residential buildings and its widespread use of brick-faced concrete. She begins with the city's public face--the Forum, Capitolium, Theater, and Piazzale delle Corpo||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|17||Video17 - Bigger is Better: The Baths of Caracalla and Other Second and Third-Century Buildings in Rome||Professor Kleiner discusses the increasing size of Roman architecture in the second and third centuries A.D. as an example of a "bigger is better" philosophy. She begins with an overview of tomb architecture, a genre that, in Rome as in Ostia...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|18||Video18 - Hometown Boy: Honoring an Emperor's Roots in Roman North Africa||Professor Kleiner discusses two Roman cities in North Africa: Timgad and Leptis Magna. Timgad was created as an entirely new colony for Roman army veterans by Trajan in A.D. 100, and designed all at once as an ideal castrum plan. Leptis Magna...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|19||Video19 - Baroque Extravaganzas: Rock Tombs, Fountains, and Sanctuaries in Jordan, Lebanon, and Libya||Professor Kleiner features the baroque phenomenon in Roman architecture, in which the traditional vocabulary of architecture, consisting of columns and other conventional architectural elements, is manipulated to enliven building façades and inject ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|20||Video20 - Roman Wine in Greek Bottles: The Rebirth of Athens||Professor Kleiner discusses the rebirth of Athens under the Romans especially during the reigns of the two philhellenic emperors, Augustus and Hadrian. While some have dismissed the architecture of Roman Athens as derivative of its Classical and ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|21||Video21 - Making Mini Romes on the Western Frontier||Professor Kleiner explores the architecture of the western provinces of the Roman Empire, focusing on sites in what are now North Italy, France, Spain, and Croatia. Her major objective is to characterize "Romanization," the way in which the Romans ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|22||Video22 - Rome Redux: The Tetrarchic Renaissance||Professor Kleiner characterizes third-century Rome as an "architectural wasteland" due to the rapid change of emperors, continuous civil war, and a crumbling economy. There was no time to build and the only major architectural commission was a new ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|23||Video23 - Rome of Constantine and a New Rome||Professor Kleiner presents the architecture of Constantine the Great, the last pagan and first Christian emperor of Rome, who founded Constantinople as the "New Rome" in A.D. 324. She notes that Constantine began with commissions that were tied to the ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
|24||Video24 - Paper Topics: Discovering the Roman Provinces and Designing a Roman City||Professor Kleiner presents the three options for the course's term paper, which fall into two main categories: a research paper or a project to design a Roman city. For the research paper, she suggests cities and monuments not covered or mentioned ...||10/27/2009||Free||View in iTunes|
You will love it!
Wish I could give this a higher rating than "great." My wife and I watched these lectures before going to Rome for a five week stay. Prof. Kleiner's lectures made all the ancient architecture come alive in an amazing way! We watched the lecture on Ostia Antica a second time the night before we visited it and it was amazing how much we enjoyed the visit. These lectures have a general interest beyond an academic one. The first lecture gives a good feel of how interesting the whole series is. Thanks so much, Prof. Kleiner!
Helpful preparation for travel
Thank you Dr Kleiner for these informative lectures and wonderful images of Rome, Pompeii, Ostia and other sites. I will travel to Rome and Pompeii very soon and wanted a quick way to learn about ancient architecture. It helps to know a little about ancient Rome, but even if you do not, the material is presented in a way that anyone could absorb, remember, and enjoy. I was only planning to download one or two and ended up watching nearly all of them. Excellent.
Absolutely superb in every way!
This course offers superb coverage of Roman architecture from roughly the 2nd C BCE through the 1st C CE focusing on Rome and Pompeii. In addition to fascinating material, Prof. Kleiner is an excellent lecturer. I happened across this material while searching for background information preparing as a docent for a Museum exhibit on Pompeii and the lectures were the final impetus for the decision to visit Pompeii. High recommended if you are interested in the material!