Daily Life: Introduction

 

While reflecting upon Byzantine cities, what comes to mind is monumental architecture and beautiful artwork. But what do we know about daily life in Byzantium? Looking at art, monuments and literary texts only, it is hard to get an idea about everyday activities of an 'average' person.

 

This is where archaeology can play an important role. Archaeologists unearth the material remains that people left behind. A special branch within archaeology, aptly called household archaeology, analyses multiple aspects of households, including architecture and artefact assemblages.

 

It tries to incorporate many types of evidence: not only from archaeology, but also from written and pictoral sources. Combining the three levels of data can lead to a much richer understanding of the Byzantine period.

 

In this section we investigate three aspects of everyday life.  Within the perspective of household archaeology we discuss, in general, Byzantine diet and the contents of Byzantine houses. In Athens we focus on three Byzantine houses excavated in the Agora. Their architecture and history are examined, as well as their pottery assemblages. Finally, a case-study is presented on the production and consumption of glass objects in Athens.

source background: www.ascsa.edu.gr

source glass button: www.agora.ascsa.net

source pottery button: www.agora.ascsa.net

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Glass in Archaeology

The Byzantine House

 

 Byzantine Epigraphy

Moving through the city