Three Roman shipwrecks (1st-3rd century AD) were recovered in the sandy-silt sediments representing the infilling of a protected inlet of Neapolis harbour (Naples, southern Italy). Extensive wood analysis suggests that a very attentive selection of species was made in shipbuilding, the choice of timber being related to wood technological properties and to the structural uses of the construction elements. Pollen data obtained from the coeval sedimentary layers revealed that all the timber taxa (apart from Picea/Larix) were present in the surroundings of the study area. The identified forest taxa are very common in the Mediterranean basin and thus the pollen-wood comparison was not able to define the location of the shipyards. Broad comparison with western Mediterranean wrecks evidenced the peculiarity of the Neapolis ships where the systematic use of both Juglans regia and Cupressus sempervirens was highlighted. Biogeographical and archaeobotanical considerations suggest that the possible timber production area should be restricted to those regions where agricultural practices were already well-advanced during the Roman age.

Pollen-wood analysis at the Neapolis harbour site (1st-3rd century AD, southern Italy) an its archaeobotanical implications.

Allevato, Emilia;RUSSO ERMOLLI, ELDA;DI PASQUALE, GAETANO
2010

Abstract

Three Roman shipwrecks (1st-3rd century AD) were recovered in the sandy-silt sediments representing the infilling of a protected inlet of Neapolis harbour (Naples, southern Italy). Extensive wood analysis suggests that a very attentive selection of species was made in shipbuilding, the choice of timber being related to wood technological properties and to the structural uses of the construction elements. Pollen data obtained from the coeval sedimentary layers revealed that all the timber taxa (apart from Picea/Larix) were present in the surroundings of the study area. The identified forest taxa are very common in the Mediterranean basin and thus the pollen-wood comparison was not able to define the location of the shipyards. Broad comparison with western Mediterranean wrecks evidenced the peculiarity of the Neapolis ships where the systematic use of both Juglans regia and Cupressus sempervirens was highlighted. Biogeographical and archaeobotanical considerations suggest that the possible timber production area should be restricted to those regions where agricultural practices were already well-advanced during the Roman age.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11588/365530
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