The 'lively' streets of Olynthos in the 5th century BCE: a spatial analysis of movement flows and activity areas

by Elena Cuijpers

Institution: Leiden University
Year: 2016
Keywords: Classical archaeology; Greece; Olynthos; Space syntax; Spatial analysis; Movement flows; Activity areas; Domestic archaeology; Shops; Streets
Posted: 02/05/2017
Record ID: 2072566
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/1887/38858


'The 'lively' streets of Olynthos in the 5th century BCE' is a spatial study of the North Hill of Olynthos in Northern Greece. The aim of the study was to reveal ancient movement flows and areas of activity along the streets, while investigating the connection between private and public space. In order to achieve this goal, this study applied methods from space syntax at different scales, ranging from the entire street network of the city’s North Hill to smaller street segments and individual houses. Given the lack of spatial studies focused on ancient Greek urban contexts, the study presented here used methodological advancements previously applied to the Roman cities Pompeii and Ostia. The axial analysis of Olynthos at a macro-scale has revealed valuable information about movement through the city, and the visibility graph analysis and isovist map have suggested a larger underlying principle of ‘equality’ at work in the area’s construction. At the same time, an examination of the positioning of doorways at a micro-scale has provided insights into social control, 'privacy', and the distribution of shops within the settlement. As the material remains of Olynthos were significantly affected by the settlement’s destruction by Philip II in 348 BCE, this spatial study adds complementary information to the study of the material record. Advisors/Committee Members: Stöger, Hanna (advisor).