The Roman temple at Elaiussa Sebaste, dated to the early 1st cent. AD, was converted into a small isolated ecclesiastical complex in the late 5th-early 6th cent. AD. The Roman building was quite certainly partially in ruin when the new construction site was installed, having been partially damaged by an earthquake and abandoned. The analysis of the rebuilding processes reveals that a complete and radical reconstruction was carried out, with new installations and total loss of structural function of the few extant structures of the pagan temple. The limited access to resources due to the rather isolated position of the complex – located in an extra-urban area upon a hill – determined a systematic reuse of construction materials of the pre-existing complex, all of which in local limestone: the podium was completely deprived of its facing blocks, many of the columns were removed and quite all the architectural elements were reworked into small blocks used for the new complex. Only very few remains of the temple were preserved, but totally modified in architectural purpose. The overall plan and internal organisation of the Byzantine building, even if insisting in the same area of the temple’s podium, reveal therefore a conceptual re-evaluation of the pre-existent structures according to completely new necessities. Even if the intentional transformation of the temple structures into a Christian religious complex seems to indicate a sort of continuity, the structural analysis reveals a significant functional transformation of the building. In fact, the addition of a living sector and of service areas for the production and storage is a clear marker of a deep socio-political and economic change involving the city of Elaiussa and its hinterland in the Early Byzantine age. Thence, the transformation process in the ancient architecture of the temple may be seen upon a wider and comprehensive perspective.

A building site from a ruin. The Early Byzantine ecclesiastical complex within the Roman temple of Elaioussa Sebaste (Cilicia) / Borgia, Emanuela. - (2020), pp. 423-432. (Intervento presentato al convegno 13. Diskussionen zur Archäologischen Bauforschung tenutosi a Berlin; Germany).

A building site from a ruin. The Early Byzantine ecclesiastical complex within the Roman temple of Elaioussa Sebaste (Cilicia)

Emanuela Borgia
2020

Abstract

The Roman temple at Elaiussa Sebaste, dated to the early 1st cent. AD, was converted into a small isolated ecclesiastical complex in the late 5th-early 6th cent. AD. The Roman building was quite certainly partially in ruin when the new construction site was installed, having been partially damaged by an earthquake and abandoned. The analysis of the rebuilding processes reveals that a complete and radical reconstruction was carried out, with new installations and total loss of structural function of the few extant structures of the pagan temple. The limited access to resources due to the rather isolated position of the complex – located in an extra-urban area upon a hill – determined a systematic reuse of construction materials of the pre-existing complex, all of which in local limestone: the podium was completely deprived of its facing blocks, many of the columns were removed and quite all the architectural elements were reworked into small blocks used for the new complex. Only very few remains of the temple were preserved, but totally modified in architectural purpose. The overall plan and internal organisation of the Byzantine building, even if insisting in the same area of the temple’s podium, reveal therefore a conceptual re-evaluation of the pre-existent structures according to completely new necessities. Even if the intentional transformation of the temple structures into a Christian religious complex seems to indicate a sort of continuity, the structural analysis reveals a significant functional transformation of the building. In fact, the addition of a living sector and of service areas for the production and storage is a clear marker of a deep socio-political and economic change involving the city of Elaiussa and its hinterland in the Early Byzantine age. Thence, the transformation process in the ancient architecture of the temple may be seen upon a wider and comprehensive perspective.
2020
13. Diskussionen zur Archäologischen Bauforschung
Cilicia; Elaiussa Sebaste; rebuilding in antiquity; roman temples; early byzantine churches
04 Pubblicazione in atti di convegno::04b Atto di convegno in volume
A building site from a ruin. The Early Byzantine ecclesiastical complex within the Roman temple of Elaioussa Sebaste (Cilicia) / Borgia, Emanuela. - (2020), pp. 423-432. (Intervento presentato al convegno 13. Diskussionen zur Archäologischen Bauforschung tenutosi a Berlin; Germany).
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11573/1247055
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