The main objective of the “ Pistrina – research on bakeries in Roman Italy” project is to define, on an archaeological basis, the chronology of the transition from purely domestic to commercial bread making, following the evolution of techniques, in particular in relation to the oven, and the organisation of productive spaces.
The first step towards this aim is the creation of an exhaustive catalogue, based mainly on the sites of Pompeii and Ostia, of the various types of equipment present in the workshops: mill-stones, mixers, work tables, ovens, water supply and furnishings. Using this catalogue it will be possible to propose a faithful reconstruction of the production line in bakeries. From this it will then be possible to undertake a spatial analysis of the organisation of the production areas which takes into account the available spaces and how they were used to satisfy the necessities of the production line.
This analysis will be necessary at Pompeii in particular as the bakeries were located in spaces that were originally domestic and thus had to be adapted for the new activity. These problems were increased by the sismic activity which affected the city during its final years.
As regards Pompeii, a production of excess flour may be hypothesized from the absence of mill-stones in some spaces which had an oven and from the existence of premises that only undertook milling. Besides, the presence of tabernae at the front of a number of bakeries suggests the sale of freshly baked bread just out of the oven. It is also necessary to consider the possible sales outlets used by bakeries which were not attached to a taberna.
During the campaign undertaken in September 2008 two trenches were opened with the aim of determining the period when the oven was built. Whilst awaiting the first results from the pottery study the structures around the area of the oven were analysed. Of the five phases identified three are linked to the oven and the alterations made to it. Its construction obliterated the early installation with the construction of a wall which altered the spatial distribution in the southern part of the house. An arch was built above the new foundations which permitted the passage between the two new rooms; it may be that this construction pre-dated that of the oven – in this case it would relate to a building site phase. In the next phase, the south-eastern room was occupied by the oven, which had what was probably a water-heating structure incorporated into its façade. At a later time, together with the construction of an ash-pit, the cooking chamber was transformed, its almost circular plan being elongated to become pyriform. A final change occurred during the last years of the bakery’s use when the floor level was raised.
- Nicolas Monteix - Ecole française de Rome
- Christophe Loiseau - Université du Maine
- Cécile Hartz - Université de Paris-I
- Eloïse Letellier - École normale supérieure, Paris
- Marc Célié - Institut National de la Recherche en Archéologie Préventive
- Marie-Adeline Le Guennec - École normale supérieure, Paris
- Samuel Longepierre - IRAA-Université de Provence
- Sandra Zanella - Università di Siena
- Sanna Aho - University of Helsinki/Institutum Classicum
- Yves Manniez - Institut National de la Recherche en Archéologie Préventive
- Marie Derreumaux - Centre de Recherches Archéologiques de la Vallée de l’Oise
- Véronique Matterne - CNRS
- Anika Duvauchelle
- Antoine Gailliot - UPJV
- Arnaud Coutelas - ArkéMine
- Evelyne Bukowiecki - IRAA-Université de Provence
- François Fouriaux - Maison de l’Archéologie, Chartres
- Vincent Lallet - Maison de l’Archéologie, Chartres
- Centro Jean Bérard di Napoli
- École Française de Rome
- Fittes S.A. (Nîmes)
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