History and archaeology of the provinces of the Roman Empire

Dr Ralph Haussler

This research strand focuses on the history and archaeology of the Roman provinces, both east and west, investigating cultures, religions and societies in a provincial context. The aim is inter alia to analyse social and cultural developments and to understand the diversity of the various regions that form part of the Roman empire. How did the local population experience Roman imperialism, how did their diverging experiences shape their identities, their lifestyles, ambitions and their patterns of behaviour, how did societies and culture change and interact within the empire? There are a number of specialised studies within this strand:, such as literacy in the Roman Empire, regional prosopography and “Epigraphie spatiale” (v. infra), and a cluster of research projects focussing on aspects of identity.

The cluster has a long history of engagement with the wider community. Within this research strand, strategies for impact have focused on public exhibitions of work and increasing audiences for our research outside of academia.  For example, The City of Rome Project has established an annual public lecture series which is hosted on the Lampeter campus (2012, 2013, 2014). The project has also organised successful public exhibitions of materials from the University’s special collection, the Roderic Bowen Library and Archives.

Funding applications are in development with the AHRC

One of the ongoing collaborations takes place between Lampeter and the international project “Épigraphie spatiale” which is organised by the University of Franche-Comté, Besançon, France (under the auspices of Dr Marie-Jeanne Ouriachi, University of Nice). The aim of this project is to study regional prosopography and spatial dynamics of human migration in Roman Gaul in the longue durée. This project unites researchers from a number of universities and research institutions in France and beyond.  Ralph Häussler was also a compiler for the Barrington Atlas of the Greek and Roman World, ed. by Richard Talbert. Princeton University Press, 2000. 

Ralph Häussler and John Pearce. 2007. “Empire and Literacy in the Roman World”, in K. Lomas, R.D. White­house and J.B. Wilkins (edd.), Literacy and the State in the ancient Mediterranean, London (Accordia Research Monographs), pp. 219–236.

In the Roman empire, writing became increasingly important, but just how literate was the provincial population? This is a critical review of archaeological and epigraphic finds as evidence for passive and active literacy.


Simon Loseby and Ralph Häussler 2000. “Map 16 ‘Albingaunum – Fréjus’”, in: R. Tal­bert (ed.), The Barrington Atlas of the Greek and Roman World. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press. 

This Atlas provides maps, archaeological gazetteers and bibliographies for the ancient world.


Ralph Häussler 1993-1994. “The Romanisation of the civitas Vangionum”, Bulletin of the Institute of Archaeology London 15, 1993 (1994), 41-104.        

(download on: http://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-00371598/fr/)

This article provides an analysis of the archaeological, numismatic and epigraphic testimonies discovered in the city of Borbetomagus and the territory of the civitas Vangionum in the Roman province of Germania Superior. Among others, this paper provides a prosopography of this region, a discussion of settlement patterns and people’s identity in the late Iron Age and the Roman period.