Migrating Tombs, from Rome to Carthage (20 min)


Joann Freed, University of Alberta


Carthage adopted a stuccoed version of the altar tomb common in the city of Rome, which was otherwise rare in North Africa. This was a result of the early imperial administrative system that regularly sent imperial slaves, trained in Rome, to Carthage. The tomb type they used was so attractive it was adopted by anyone at Carthage who could afford it. Inscriptions, tomb structure, and the figural decoration and visual tropes of specific altar tombs date this social process within the first and second centuries C.E.