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The Bountiful Sea: Fish processing and consumption in Classical Antiquity - 06-07-08/09/2017, Oxford




This conference will gather archaeologists, scientists, cooks, and classical scholars to discuss new evidence for fish exploitation and new perspectives on the manufacture, transport, and consumption of fish-based products in Mediterranean antiquity. To improve our experiential knowledge, the meeting also includes an innovative culinary programme that invites participants to engage with Roman fish products and fish-based dishes (yes, garum!).


FECHA/ DATE/DATA: 06-07-08/09/2017


LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: Taylor Institute (Oxford, England)


ORGANIZADOR/ORGANIZER/ORGANIZZATORE: Angela Trentacoste( Oxford Roman Economy Project,University of Oxford) ; Dimitra Mylona (Institute for Aegean Prehistory,Study Center for East Crete) ; Rebecca Nicholson(Oxford Archaeology) ; Sally Grainger (Independent scholar &author of The Classical Cookbook) Andrew K. G. Jones (University of York).


INFO: web - fish@classics.ox.ac.uk


INSCRIPCIÓN/REGISTRATION/REGISTRAZIONE: Aquí/here/qui [deadline: 22/08/2017]


1) Registration for the complete academic and culinary programme (Wednesday 6 - Friday 8 September) - £100 / £72 Including keynote lecture, Roman fish tasting dinner, academic sessions, sauce tastings, receptions, lunch


2) Registration for the opening evening events only (Wednesday 6 September) - £72 Keynote lecture, reception, Roman fish tasting dinner


All are welcome, and we hope these flexible options promote attendance by a diverse range of academics, specialists, and general enthusiasts who might not otherwise be able to join us for the complete 3-day programme.



PROGRAMA/PROGRAM/PROGRAMMA: Aquí/here/qui


Wednesday 6 September – Keynote lecture & Roman Seafood Tasting Dinner

15:30 Registration opens

17:00 Opening Lecture - John Wilkins, University of Exeter: Cooking and processing fish in antiquity: questions of taste and texture

18:00 Drinks

19:00 Roman Seafood Tasting Dinner – Ashmolean Museum



Thursday 7 September


09:00 Registration

09:30 Welcome


Widening the net – Fish processing and consumption in context

10:00 Arturo Morales-Muñiz, Universidad Autonoma de Madrid: Fishing in the ancient Mediterranean: an overview of old-established paradigms

10:30 Annalisa Marzano, University of Reading: Fishing and fish in the Roman world: the documentary evidence 11:00 - Break -

11:30 Benedict Lowe, Royal Holloway University of London: The relationship of fish salting to other areas of the marine economy

12:00 Cristina Carusi, The University of Texas at Austin: Salt and fish processing in the ancient Mediterranean: an economically profitable and mutually beneficial relationship

2:30 Mini talks by poster presenters

13:00 - Lunch -


Tackling the Western Mediterranean

14:00 Dario Bernal Casasola, University of Cadiz: From the sea to the amphorae: the halieutic cycle in Baelo Claudia fish-salting plants

14:30 Sónia Gabriel, Laboratório de Arqueociências, Direcção Geral do Património Cultural: On fish and their products: trawling ancient fisheries in Lusitania

15:00 Athena Trakadas, University of Southern Denmark: An overview of fish-salting and fresh fish consumption on the Mediterranean coast of the western Maghreb in antiquity

15:30 Emmanuel Botte, Centre Camille Jullian, CNRS: Fish exploitation in Italy and Sicily during Antiquity

16:00 - Break -

16:30 Rebecca Nicholson, Oxford Archaeology & Mark Robinson, University of Oxford: Fish consumption in Herculaneum

17:00 Sally Grainger, Independent scholar: Garum, liquamen and allec: what’s in a name? Including fish sauce demonstration and introduction to tastings

18:00 Fish sauce tasting and drinks



Friday 8 September

Eastern perspectives – Another kettle of fish

09:00 Tatiana Theodoropoulou, Equipe de Protohistoire égéenne, ArScAn-UMR 7041: To salt or not to salt: a overview of evidence for processed marine products in Greek antiquity and Aegean traditions

09:30 Efi Ragia, The Greek Open University & Institute for Byzantine Research/ National Hellenic Research Foundation: Marine products as delicacies. The transport and preservation of marine products in Byzantium 10:00 Susan Weingarten, formerly Tel Aviv University: Fish and fish products in late antique Palestine in their social and geographic contexts: archaeology and the talmudic literature

10:30 Ephraim Lytle, University of Toronto: The economics of fishing and saltfish production in the Eastern Mediterranean

11:00 - Break -


Plenty more fish – New methodological approaches and laboratory-based methods

11:30 Irit Zohar, Oranim Academic College: Fish cuisine in antiquity: can we identify local fish processing methods and trade?

12:00 Omri Lernau (University of Haifa), Guy Sisma-Ventura (Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz), Thomas Tütken (Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz), Irit Zohar (Oranim Academic College), Andreas Pack (Georg-August-Universität Göttingen), Dorit Sivan (University of Haifa), Ayelet Gilboa (University of Haifa) & Guy Bar-Oz (University of Haifa): Isotopic analysis of sparid teeth – a further indication for trade along the East Mediterranean coast

12:30 Kristine Korzow Richter, University of York: Using the other 90%: ZooMS identification of tunny bones and scales from Mediterranean contexts

13:00 - Lunch -

14:00 Carl Heron, The British Museum & Oliver Craig, University of York: What can the molecular and isotopic analysis of organic residues tell us about the exploitation of marine resources?

14:30 Nicolas Garnier, SAS Laboratory N. Garnier: Looking for ancient fish products through invisible biomolecular residues

15:00 Oliver Craig, University of York: Quantifying the marine contribution to Roman diets: pushing the limits of the bone stable isotope record

15:30 - Break -


Making waves? Future directions and discussion

16:00 Dimitra Mylona, Institute for Aegean Prehistory, Study Center for East Crete: Processing of marine resources east and west: varying traditions, technologies and scales across the Mediterranean

16:30 Through the eyes of a biologist – A response by Manos Koutrakis, Hellenic Fisheries Research Institute 17:00 Discussion

18:00 - Drinks -


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