Given that their sole purpose was as outlets for trade with the East, their harbour facilities are of particular interest in understanding the organisation of the trade.
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It is commonly believed that the first circumnavigation of Africa was made by the Portuguese under Vasco da Gama in A.D. 1497-99. However a closer look at the records will reveal that they in fact were not the first people to do so.
The chronological distribution of the naval triumphs supports the assertions of Polybius and other ancient sources that the Romans only undertook serious naval combat from the First Punic War.
The Levanzo I shipwreck provides insight into a fundamental component of the Roman annona system in the 4th century: individual merchant-ship cargos.
The sounding weight was the most widely used and critical piece of navigational equipment in the Mediterranean cultures from at least the sixth century B.C. until the appearance of the compass in this region in the eleventh or twelfth century A.D.
The ways that technology, religion, mythology and seafaring overlap one another in antiquity.
This paper aims to reconstruct and suggest many of the aspects of Roman dock workers including their numbers, hiring practices, and unloading practices. The role of harbor capacity will also be reviewed to understand Rome’s ability to safely import several hundred thousand tons and prevent famine.