The New Project Gallery

A selection of new reconstruction images from the Visualisation project are now available to view on the Gallery page!


Aerial view of the Decumanus (main street) in Ostia.
© Will Foster Illustration.

Illustrator Will Foster has created a series of scenes set in late antique Ostia (the port of Rome). These scenes are designed to loosely illustrate Luke Lavan’s retelling of St Augustine’s visit to Ostia in November AD 387, which he described in his Confessions (Book IX). The images draw on discoveries made during recent archaeological work by the University of Kent in conjunction with the Humboldt University of Berlin at Ostia since 2008. Will has painstakingly created these images based on information provided to him by other team members – either in the form of evidence directly from Ostia (especially from Kent’s archaeological excavations at the site) and through parallels in material or textual evidence found elsewhere in late antiquity.


Overview of the reconstructed macellum in Ostia.
© Will Foster Illustration.

For example, the detail shot of sausage-making in the Ostian macellum (meat market) required a variety of sources to be consulted to ensure the processes Will depicted were authentic. Joe Williams produced a likely process of production based upon extant recipes including those from Apicius, and appropriate cooking equipment paralleled at archaeological sites across the Mediterranean.

The final scene (below) shows a number of figures at the stall, working with a portable brazier and a variety of utensils to provide freshly cooked sausages to the waiting customers, the Ostian take-away of its day.


Detail scene of the sausage-making stand in the Ostian macellum.
© Will Foster Illustration.