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Durham University

Department of Archaeology


Publication details for Dr Robert Witcher

Witcher, R.E. (2006). Settlement and Society in Early Imperial Etruria. Journal of Roman Studies 96: 88-123.

Author(s) from Durham


This paper compares the early imperial period results from thirty surveys in and around regio VII Etruria in order to identify similarities and differences of settlement, population and economy. Three sub-regional patterns are defined: the suburbium, coastal Etruria and inland Etruria. Consideration of methodological issues of survey comparison suggests the problem is real, but not insuperable. A range of interpretative models is discussed with particular reference to the impact of the urbs on economic, agricultural and social developments. The structural connections between the sub-regions are emphasized, particularly the organization of labour, demography and agricultural strategies. The results reveal varied responses to Roman control, leading to more not less social and economic diversity. More generally, the results underline the value of comparing regional survey data.