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Death in Motion: Funeral Processions in the Roman Forum

Diane Favro and Christopher Johanson
Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians
Vol. 69, No. 1 (March 2010), pp. 12-37
DOI: 10.1525/jsah.2010.69.1.12
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1525/jsah.2010.69.1.12
Page Count: 26
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Death in Motion: Funeral Processions in the Roman Forum
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Abstract

Scientifically accurate, three-dimensional digital representations of historical environments allow architectural historians to explore viewsheds, movement, sequencing, and other factors. Using real-time interactive simulations of the Roman Forum during the mid-Republic and the early third century CE, Diane Favro and Christopher Johanson examine the visual and sequential interrelationships among audience, actors, and monuments during funeral rituals. Death in Motion: Funeral Processions in the Roman Forum presents a hypothetical reconstruction of the funeral of the Cornelii family in the early second century BCE and argues that the conventional understanding of the staging of the funeral oration may be incorrect. It then reviews the imperial funerals of the emperors Pertinax and Septimius Severus to compare the ways that later building in the Roman Forum altered the ritual experience, controlled participant motion, and compelled the audience to submit to an imperial program of viewing.

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