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London in the Roman World

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incAn original, authoritative survey of the archaeology and history of Roman London. London in the Roman World draws on the results of latest archaeological discoveries to describe London’s Roman origins. It presents a wealth of new information from one of the world’s richest and most intensively studied archaeological sites, and a host of original ideas concerning its economic and political history. This original study follows a narrative approach, setting archaeological data firmly within its historical context. London was perhaps converted from a fort built at the time of the Roman conquest, where the emperor Claudius arrived to celebrate his victory in AD 43, to become the commanding city from which Rome supported its military occupation of Britain. London grew to support Rome’s campaigning forces, and the book makes a close study of the political and economic consequences of London’s role as a supply base. Rapid growth generated a new urban landscape, and this study provides a comprehensive guide to the industry and architecture of the city. The story, traced from new archaeological research, shows how the city was twice destroyed in war, and suffered more lastingly from plagues of the second and third centuries. These events had a critical bearing on the reforms of late antiquity, from which London emerged as a defended administrative enclave only to be deserted when Rome failed to maintain political control. This ground-breaking study brings new information and arguments to our study of the way in which Rome ruled, and how the empire failed.