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Roman Life

Discover the life and society of the Romans with this collection of articles on all aspects of Roman life. Learn about their food and drink, social structure, politics, government, military, warfare & colonization, housing and architecture, arts, trade & economy, and more. Delve into the cultural practices and traditions of the Roman people to gain a deeper understanding of their way of life.

Roman Society & Culture

Roman Entertainment & Leisure

Roman Politics, Government & Law

Roman Art, Music, Literature

Roman Architecture & Engineering

Roman Colonization & Expansion

Roman Military & Warfare

Roman Economy & Trade

Archaeologists survey the area near Trafalgar Square, London.        Source: © Archaeology South-East

Saxon ‘London’ Was Bigger Than Previously Thought

In a remarkable archaeological endeavor, the team from Archaeology South-East, a division of the UCL Institute of Archaeology, has made groundbreaking discoveries beneath the National Gallery at the...
Building blocks reclaimed from the ruins of the Roman legion base at Tel Megiddo.                Source: IAA

Archaeologists Unearth Largest Roman Legion Base in Israel

Archaeologists excavating at the foot of Tel Megiddo in Israel have uncovered “the largest Roman base” ever discovered in the country. Here, during the Roman occupation of Judea, a colony of highly-...
The Roman-era egg was cast into a watery pit, possibly as part of a funeral rite. Source: Oxford Archaeology.

1,700-year-old Egg Found at Roman Era Site Still Has Liquid Contents

An extraordinary discovery in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, has stunned archaeologists and scientists worldwide: a 1,700-year-old egg, is the only intact specimen from Roman Britain, and now considered...
Left; Cimex lectularius, bedbug. Center; Wing casings (elytra) of Oryzaephilus surinamensis found at Vindolanda. Right: Almost complete wing casing (elytron) of Aphodius sp. Source: Left; Daktaridudu/CC BY-SA 4.0, Center and Right; Katie Wyse Jackson/Vindolanda Trust

Romans Look to Have Brought Bedbugs to Britain

In a fascinating addition to our understanding of ancient Britain, recent archaeological work at Vindolanda, a key Roman garrison south of Hadrian's Wall in Northumberland, has unearthed evidence...
The Roman city at Silchester with grid road system and building locations map overlaid. Source: University of Reading

Beneath Roman Britain - An Iron Age Settlement Is Revealed At Silchester

Five decades on from the start of an archaeological dig by the University of Reading, the findings of the investigation will be brought to the public, showcasing the incredible discoveries from...
Representation of Roman god Bacchus, renowned lover of Roman wine.

Toasted Bread and Walnuts: The Secret to Sophisticated Roman Wine Revealed

Of the many cultural and physical remnants left behind by the Romans, along with everlasting concrete, a love of wine also endures. When the Roman poet Horace contemplates death, he was more...
Conservator Bethan Bryan with the Roman arm guard. Source: Duncan McGlynn / National Museums Scotland

“Absolutely Amazing” Roman Arm Guard Pieced Together After 1,800 Years

Over 100 years ago, a Scot unearthed over 100 fragments of metal which he thought comprised a Roman chest guard. Now, National Museums Scotland have reconstructed the artifact and discovered that it...
An ancient Roman gladiator. Source: Luis Louro /Adobe Stock

The Reality of Gladiator Life and Their Training (Video)

In the world of gladiators , once perceived as either heroic warriors or despised villains, their existence is marked by brutality and ritualized training rather than the romanticized notions of...
Various shots of the mosaic now confirmed dated to the 5th century at Chedworth Roman Villa. Source: Stephen Haywood/Ian Shaw/ © National Trust Images

Roman Mosaic Date Brightens Up Britain’s Dark Ages in More Ways Than One

Rome wasn’t built in a day, but it’s popularly believed that its fall to ‘barbaric’ forces by the beginning of the 5th century, plunged all of Europe into a ‘Dark Age’, where towns and villas...
Composite of excavations, burials and artifacts from the Roman necropolis recently uncovered near Rome. Source: Soprintendenza Archeologia Belle Arti Paesaggio Etruria Meridionale

Opulent Tombs & Untold Wealth Revealed at Newly Found Roman Necropolis

Archaeologists involved in a two-year-long excavation project at the site of a planned solar energy plant near Rome unearthed something astonishing and totally unexpected. While exploring under a...
A computer-generated image of the battle that is thought to have taken place on a remote mountainside south of Chur around 15 BC between Roman troops advancing northwards through the Alps and local Suanetes. Source: Courtesy of Leona Detig

Lost Roman Battlefield in Switzerland Discovered Through Thousands of Artifacts

In 2019, a spectacular Roman dagger was metal detected in a remote region of the Swiss Alps. Now, a team of scientists and students have mapped a 2,000-year-old Roman battlefield representing the...
The Roman aqueduct that supplied water to Viminacium, a large city on the Roman frontier, Serbia.	Source: Carles Lalueza-Foz/Cell

How the Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire Shifted Populations

Despite the Roman Empire's extensive military and cultural influence on the nearby Balkan peninsula, a DNA analysis of individuals who lived in the region between 1 and 1000 AD found no genetic...
Boudicca became the warrior queen who led a revolt against Roman rule in ancient Britain. Source: NorLife/Adobe Stock

Boudicca: The Truth Behind the British Legend (Video)

Boudicca, the enigmatic warrior queen of the Iceni, has become a legendary figure in British history. Her rebellion against the Roman Empire, shrouded in the accounts of historians Tacitus and...
Aerial image of Danebury Fort, an Iron Age hillfort in Hampshire, England. Source: Hampshire Hub and University of Southampton/OGL v1.0OGL v1.0

Danebury Fort, the Formidable Home of Iron Age Britons

Danebury Fort, also known simply as Danebury, is an Iron Age hillfort located in Hampshire, England. It is one of the most extensively studied hillforts in Britain and is known for its archaeological...
Two of the gems discovered along with thousands of Roman coins in the ancient Roman city of Claterna in Italy. Source: Soprintendenza Bologna

Massive Cache of Roman Coins and Gems Found in Ancient “Magical City”

Excavations at a spectacular ancient Roman site in northern Italy have produced some significant finds during the most recent archaeological season. The latest of these remarkable discoveries in the...
The building floor plans formerly belonged to rectangular cult buildings made of clay framework at the Haltern Roman camp in Germany. Source: LWL / C. Hentzelt

Sacred Surprises: Unearthing Twin Temples at the Haltern Roman Camp

During the Roman wars with the Celtic tribes of ancient Europe, when they acquired new lands, they built forts, defensive walls and temples. Now, a team of archaeologists in Germany have made the...
Extensive floor mosaics uncovered at the site at İncesu, Cappadocia.	Source: Kayseri Municipality

Vast and Mesmerizing Floor Mosaic Unearthed in Cappadocian Villa

A floor mosaic covering a whopping area of 600 square meters has been uncovered during excavations in Cappadocia, in the heart of Turkey. Ongoing excavations at the site, believed to be the remnants...
Dr Murray Cook (bottom left) and other members of the dig with the remains of the ancient Roman Road in Stirling, Scotland. Source: Stirling Council

Most Important Road in Scottish History Found in Stirling

Archaeologists digging in Stirling, Scotland’s ancient capital, have unearthed a section of Roman road in the garden of a 17th century drovers inn. This ancient track, unlike all others, was later...
This group of figures depict an early Roman victory. Marcus Furius Camillus, sometimes called the second founder of Rome, is shown in his victory over Brennus, King of the Gauls. Source: Slices of Light/CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

More Than a Founder, Marcus Furius Camillus Was an Exemplar of Roman Virtue

While ancient Rome achieved many awe-inspiring feats, it is also remembered for its controversial citizens—especially its leaders—who embraced unrestrained decadence. Their conduct was so outlandish...
A sample of Poidebard’s (1934) aerial photographs: A) fort at Qreiye; B) Roman fort and medieval caravanserai at Birke; C) fort at Tell Zenbil; and D) castellum at Tell Brak.

Declassified Cold War Spy Satellite Images Reveal Roman Forts In Syria and Iraq

In their examination of aerial photographs from the 1960s and 70s, archaeologists have identified 396 uncharted Roman forts in the Syrian and Iraqi regions along the Syrian steppe, from “the world’s...
The Sertorian War saw Roman generals and forces clash with the rebel leader Sertorius in a prolonged struggle for control. Source: Hui / Adobe Stock

The Sertorian War: How Rebels Nearly Toppled Rome from Within

Even the greatest of empires and kingdoms can be weakened by internal strife and civil war. The formidable power of Rome was no exception. Throughout its history—from the Republic to the Empire days—...
Roman parties were all about grand displays of wealth, power and status. (Public Domain)

The Truth About Secret Ancient Roman Parties (Video)

In ancient Rome , extravagant parties were not just about revelry; they were grand displays of wealth, power, and social status. These gatherings encompassed various types, including dinner parties,...
Limestone bust from a Palmyrene funerary relief; double bust of man and his wife; she is veiled with the fillet; wears drop ear-rings and two long curls of hair; holds in left hand distaff and spindle; he wears a toga and holds a strip of writing material in his right hand; inscription; 2 ll. Inscription: OYIPIA ( ) OIBH () AIOCOYIIOC () KIMOC - Viria Phoebe and Gaius Vurus. Left: Bust of a noblewoman nicknamed "Beauty of Palmyra” Copenhagen, Denmark.	Source:  Carole Raddato from FRANKFURT, Germany/CC BY-SA

Palmyra Busts - A Window into the Ancient Palmyra’s Customs

Throughout history, many ethnicities and civilizations were often distinguished by their funerary beliefs and burial customs. From the Egyptian pyramids to the Neolithic Passage tombs, burial always...
Archaeologists discovering roman era makeup and jewelry at the Aizanoi archaeological site and, right, an example of the makeup. Source: Anadolu Agency

2,000-Year-Old Roman Era Makeup & Jewelry Unearthed in Ancient City of Aizanoi

In the ancient city of Aizanoi, located in Turkey's Kutahya province, archaeologists have unearthed remnants of cosmetic products, which include jewelry items and makeup materials, dating back over 2...