Bathing in antiquity elevates a prosaic function to the level of a civic institution for which there is no counterpart in contemporary culture. Enriched by over 500 illustrations, many of them by the author, Baths and Bathing in Classical Antiquity is an important sourcebook for this ancient institution. Through hundreds of examples, it reviews and analyzes the structure, function, and design of baths, seeking to integrate their architecture with the wider social and cultural custom of bathing, and examining in particular the changes this custom underwent in Late Antiquity and in Byzantine and Islamic cultures.
Yegul explores the complexities of ancient bathing from several points of view. Sociologically, the baths with their vast appeal for all levels of society - were seen as the epitome of democratic ideals and institutions. Politically, they provided the perfect vehicle of propaganda: their lavish and magnificent interiors reflected the might and prosperity of the Roman empire and the apparent generosity of the emperor himself.
Architecturally, baths are at the vanguard in the development of Roman building technology. Some of the earliest uses of concrete as a building material and the most innovative applications of the aesthetics of concrete - bold, curvilinear forms, vaults, and domes involved bath buildings. Because of their status as transition between purely utilitarian structures and the more conservative, traditional forms of public and religious architecture, the baths helped to propagate and make acceptable new ideas and new styles in architecture.
An Architectural History Foundation Book
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Fikret Yegül is Professor of Ancient Art and Architecture in the History of Art and Architecture Department, the University of California at Santa Barbara.Review:
"In the world of Greece and Rome the practice of bathing . . . could embrace both the comfort of the bather and the self-satisfaction and self-advertisement of those who made that comfort possible through their wealth or patronage. A visit to the public baths, we are reminded in Baths and Bathing in Classical Antiquity, became a daily ritual in which the actual bath played a minor role, while provision of public baths for the citizenry became a duty that no governor, emperor or man of means could afford to neglect. . . . [Yegul's] book offers a very rich compendium of the architectural evidence, Greek and Roman, and is very fully illustrated. . . . The Roman provinces (especially modern Turkey and North Africa) occupy more space than Rome itself, and there are special sections devoted to spas, medicine, and the problems of water supply and heating."
—John Boardman, New York Times Book Review
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Descrizione libro The MIT Press, 1996. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria SONG0262740184
Descrizione libro The MIT Press, 1996. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria P110262740184
Descrizione libro The MIT Press, 1996. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. book. Codice libro della libreria 262740184
Descrizione libro The MIT Press, 1996. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. book. Codice libro della libreria 0262740184