Archaeology of Portus: Exploring the Lost Harbour of Ancient Rome


Learn how ancient artefacts, written evidence, excavation and digital technologies are transforming understanding of this harbour.


Why join the course?

The harbour city of Portus was the conduit for everything that Rome required from its Mediterranean provinces: foods and grain, luxuries of all kinds, building materials, people and wild animals for the arena. Largely filmed on location at Portus, you will learn to interpret the archaeological discoveries and what they tell us about the history, landscape, buildings, and people of this unique place. You will also gain insight into the wide range of digital technologies employed to record, analyse and present the site and some of the best-preserved Roman port buildings in the Mediterranean.

What topics will you cover?

  • The archaeological site of Portus and the surrounding area, in terms of its historical context, related written records, and its archaeological and architectural data.
  • Archaeology at multiple scales, from the Roman Empire, via the Roman Mediterranean, landscapes, the port, individual buildings and unique artefacts.
  • The Roman people who lived, worked and died at the site.
  • The range of multidisciplinary methods and theories that are in place at Portus, including techniques, data, values, and ethics.
  • The uses and implications of a range of the archaeological digital techniques in use at Portus, to record, analyse, interpret and present the site.


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