Posts by Stefan Caliniuc:

Characterisation and analyses of museum objects using pXRF: An application from the Delphi Museum, Greece

Twenty-six objects from the Delphi archaeological Museum, including nearby museum premises, have been analysed by portable XRF. The aim was their characterization, provenance and archaeological interpretations. Twenty-one miniature Corinthian ceramic vases, a bronze and a ceramic pyxis bearing powder, four pigments on ceramics and six elegant glass vases, were non-destructively measured in situ. The ceramic analysis seems to form one cluster with similar chemical traits. The clay is calcareous with relatively high iron and titanium contents. Slip painted surface was due to increased MgO and Fe2O3. Four elegant glass vases were statistically compared to about 270 published data of similar period for provenance study and investigating the mineral agents for colouring glass. In fact the clustering analysis forms one of the major analytical groups containing the Delphi samples and also samples from Rhodes and Satricum. Of the major findings is the highly toxic mercury as cinnabar (HgS), a red pigment very commonly used since antiquity, mixed with PbO white lead in face powders. Particular elemental variations in all groups are discussed. Multiple statistical analysis was used, such as, various hierarchical cluster versions, PCA, bi-plots. The case study provides a practical aid to archaeological interpretation and emphasizes the valuable use of portable XRF in museum studies on material culture ranging from various types and periods.

Materiales mágicos. Conjuros, fantasmas, necromancia y otros dispositivos de economía antropológica en el pensamiento griego

The studies on ancient philosophy have a long tradition of analysis about the Greek views on anthropology. The beliefs developed in Greece from the archaic to the Hellenistic times offer a wide range of variants different from the opposition between soul and body that became traditional in the classical period, with continuities and contrasts regarding later thought. However, some important elements go often unnoticed and this compromises the quality of the reconstruction of the ancient epoch. In this work, we will study three points related to magic: the spells, the ghosts and necromancy, in order to infer from these materials the underlying anthropological structure.

La administración subalterna en Raetia durante el Imperio Romano

This study deals with the positions and people of the subordinate administration of the province of Raetia since its creation, at the end of the 1st century BC, until the first half of the 3rd century AD. The data that we know of all of them is offered to obtain an overview of this administrative area that has often been forgotten.

Roman pottery in the countryside of Dobruja. Topolog as case study

This paper presents a pottery assemblage discovered at Topolog (Tulcea County) in 2010, at approximatively 500 m northwest of the village, in two refused pits severely affected by the extraction of clay by the locals. In the same area a rectangular kiln for the production of bricks and tiles was investigated. The pottery assemblage consists of transport amphorae for wine and salt fish (Shelov C and Zeest 84/85), fine ware (Pontic sigillata), drinking and cooking ware, and a number of hand-made pottery of La Tène tradition. These forms date back to the 2nd century AD and reflect the trade relations of a rural community from the periphery of the Empire with the north and south-eastern Pontic regions.

The population of Colonia Sarmizegetusa

This paper presents the population of Colonia Sarmizegetusa, the first city of the province of Dacia. This is a case study within the project Romans 1 by 1 (, a database which aims to comprise the population of Dacia, Moesia Superior, and Moesia Inferior. This study presents a micro-result of the entire project, providing information to researchers not only on the people who lived in the Dacian metropolis but also on those individuals transiting through Colonia Sarmizegetusa, who got involved in the social, religious and political life of the city by erecting monuments or being dedicated to. Until this point, by compiling all existing sources, the database has recorded 495 inscriptions (the inscription records are numbered starting with 00001DS) and 706 people (each with a personal record, with a unique ID) from Colonia Sarmizegetusa. The paper’s conclusions present four results in the form of statistics, consisting of: (1) the analysis of the 495 epigraphic monuments; (2) identifying and implicitly analysing all the individuals attested on the inscriptions discovered at Colonia Sarmizegetusa; (3) population mobility, and (4) various types of relationships mentioned by epigraphic sources.

The Bioarchaeology of Humans in Italy: development and issues of a discipline

In Italy, the “Archaeology of Emergency” influences the work of physical anthropologists. In fact, most archaeological excavations are not completely investigated because of the lack of funds destined to cultural heritage and the archaeological competences intervene especially when building works bump accidentally into archaeological findings. Emergency excavations cannot pull any whole osteoarchaeological sample, thus the anthropological study is never exhaustive. In addition to this, in Italy there are still problems related to a lack of job perspective because there is not an adequate professional recognition of the bioarchaeologist. Perhaps the issues should be discussed at the root, namely that there is no clear university education that prepares for this type of profession. Today, only a postgraduate education (PhD or Master) can determine the acquisition of specific skills in the several specialties of Bioarcheology. In an era of cultural crisis, as ours is nowadays, it is a struggle to think of a right recognition of any professionalism employed in the field of cultural heritage, but we must insist for this to happen.

Salinae in Justinian’s Digest

This paper explores the references on the term salinae from Justinian’ Digest. Our approach is a semantic analysis of this term in various juridic contexts, such as: allowing permission by the state to constitute corporations for saltworks; the interdiction to alienate a saltpan from a pupillus; collecting the tax on salt-works; establishing the usufruct of inherited saltpans; the recognition of saltworks owners as publicani; the imposition of serving in saltworks as a punishment for a crime; exploring gender issues (the appliance of the same type of penalty to men and women convicted to saltworks labour); the obligation to acknowledge for the census the saltpans; the recognition of the tax on saltworks as a “public” one.

Investigating a Chalcolithic dwelling at Isaiia, Iași County, Romania

The detailed investigation of dwelling no. 14 (Precucuteni II phase) from the Isaiia site brings interesting and, in some instances, novel data concerning the building system and the internal architecture of the Early Chalcolithic housing. Also, the artefacts from inside the dwelling and from the surrounding features bear witness about prehistoric crafts like pottery manufacture, stone knapping and polishing, animal hard tissue working, about the relations with neighbouring cultural areas, and, last but not least, about the ritual behaviour of the Precucuteni communities.