Evidence collected from several archaeological sites in Rome, particularly the Crypta Balbi, dated to the 7th – 10th century AD, indicates changes in pig management that can be associated with an evolving urban landscape. Pigs in the Roman city were of small size – consistently with the evidence from most contemporary sites in Italy – and were probably bred in the countryside and then imported to the urban area. In the early Middle Ages, however, there is a clear increase in the size of domestic pigs. This is likely to be linked to the growing ruralisation of the city, which enhanced the opportunity for locally kept free-range domestic pigs to mate with their wild counterparts, producing larger animals. In the 9th – 10th century AD pigs decrease in size again, though not to the same level as in Roman times. Tighter husbandry control probably justifi es this further change, which can be associated with a more orderly social organization of the area around the Crypta Balbi.

Urban pigs: dietary, cultural and landscape changes in 1st millennium AD Rome

J. DE GROSSI MAZZORIN
;
C. MINNITI
2019-01-01

Abstract

Evidence collected from several archaeological sites in Rome, particularly the Crypta Balbi, dated to the 7th – 10th century AD, indicates changes in pig management that can be associated with an evolving urban landscape. Pigs in the Roman city were of small size – consistently with the evidence from most contemporary sites in Italy – and were probably bred in the countryside and then imported to the urban area. In the early Middle Ages, however, there is a clear increase in the size of domestic pigs. This is likely to be linked to the growing ruralisation of the city, which enhanced the opportunity for locally kept free-range domestic pigs to mate with their wild counterparts, producing larger animals. In the 9th – 10th century AD pigs decrease in size again, though not to the same level as in Roman times. Tighter husbandry control probably justifi es this further change, which can be associated with a more orderly social organization of the area around the Crypta Balbi.
978-3-89646-674-7
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11587/438235
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