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Decoration and Display in Rome's Imperial ThermaeMessages of Power and their Popular Reception at the Baths of Caracalla$
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Maryl B. Gensheimer

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780190614782

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190614782.001.0001

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The Decoration of the Baths of Caracalla

The Decoration of the Baths of Caracalla

(p.39) 2 The Decoration of the Baths of Caracalla
Decoration and Display in Rome's Imperial Thermae

Maryl B. Gensheimer

Oxford University Press

Chapter 2 explores various antiquarian, archaeological, and art historical evidence in order to reconstruct the decorative program of the Baths of Caracalla to the fullest extent possible, given the incomplete remains on site and the gaps in the archaeological and archival records. By tracing the materials scattered today between various museums, storage facilities, and private collections, the chapter compiles documentation for all art media (sculpture, mosaic, stucco, etc.) and assembles a comprehensive catalogue of the Baths’ decoration arranged according to provenance (secure, probable, or hypothetical) within the bath complex. Building on these provenance attributions, the chapter concludes by assessing decorative hierarchies and establishing decorative priorities within the Baths of Caracalla.

Keywords:   baths, Caracalla, decoration, antiquarian, excavation, sculpture, mosaic, architectural sculpture, furnishings, catalogue

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