Ostia: Houses

  • Garden Houses
  • House of the Dioscures
  • House of Apuleius
  • House/Insula of Diana
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  • Created by: Holly
  • Created on: 11-05-12 08:29

Garden Houses Plan

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Garden Houses Facts

  • Brick stamps suggest it was built sometime between 123-125 AD 
  • It was a luxurious residential comlpex
    • nice gardensexpensive apartments, shielded from the noise of the busy streets, located near the (ancient) shore line
  • Central apartments were surrounded by a garden, which was surrounded by further apartments
  • Ground floor had 16 medianum-apartments, a domus, and shops
  • Has at least two storeys
  • The staircases on the inside to the first floors, outer staircases led to further floors
  • In the middle of the complex are two 2x4 apartments, back to back
    • have a ground floor area of 220 square metres
    • however both apartments were used by one family
      • there were doorways between the apartments
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Garden Houses Facts (cont.)

  • The main vestibule (entrance) was in the south-east side
  • The walls were 60cm thick
    • meaning there were 4 storeys and possibly 1200 inhabitants
  • The garden had 6 water-basins, and lead pipes supplied water to some the upper floors
    • Buildings 17-20 may have had fountains on the upper floors
    • Buildings of the perimeter had no private water supply - they would use the basins
  • Toilets were most likely on the third floor
  • It was mostly destroyed by an earthquake - which also caused a fire
    • charring can be found and torsion-cracks from the earthquake
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House of the Dioscures Plan

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House of the Dioscures Facts

  • Named after the polychrome mosaic found in front of Hall H containing the two Dioscures, the twin Gods Castor and Pollux 
  • Built in the south-east corner of the Garden Houses
  • Room A is the main entrance, is has a curved wall and threshold
  • Room B has two semicircular niches which directly face the main entrance, these contained statues
    • showing off taste and wealth as soon as you enter the house
  • Room D, next to the main entrance, is possibly a shop
    • It connects to the house with Room E, possibly storage
  • They had corridors for slaves - rich
  • Corridor F and former medianum G caught light from the courtyard of the Garden Houses
  • Hall H contains a black and white mosaic with maeanders
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House of the Dioscures Facts (Cont.)

  • Room I was the main hall 
    • 10 x 10.5m
    • polychrome mosaic of Venus Anadiomene 
      • in a shell supported by two tritons, she is surrounded byNereids on sea creatures
    • North side has an inscription: "That you may do more and dedicate better things!"
  • Rooms M and L contain terracotta pipes for heating the room
    • hot air came from a nearby private bath
  • Room M has a polychrome mosaic 
  • Room L contains a black and white geometric mosaic
  • The west side contains bathing rooms:
    • frigidarium
    • 2 x caldarium
    • all the baths are decorated with marble
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House of Apuleius Plan

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House of Diana Plan

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