A survey of the various ways in which the extensive remains of ancient architecture were reused or destroyed in the crescent from Greece and Turkey through Syria, Palestine, North Africa to Islamic Spain. The book complements and echoes some of the themes in the author's "Marble Past, Monumental Present" (2009). Offering a large number of varied examples, it examines how the ancient landscape was transformed - towns, roads and ports, fountains and waterways, tombs, palaces, villas and inscriptions. It then addresses reuse in churches, mosques and other structures, dealing also with collectors and museum-builders. Also considered are the dismantling and transport of the often massive blocks, and the superstitions surrounding antiquities which contributed to their continuing renown or to their destruction.
Michael GreenhalghDonatello & his Sources (1982), Marble Past, Monumental Present (2009), and many papers on the fate of classical monuments.
"This is a monumental piece of work -- much like the ancient edifices it describes. I'm very impressed with the great depth and breadth of the survey. It will be an important reference work for a long time to come."
James A Harrell, Professor Emeritus of Geology, University of Toledo, and author of the
Survey of ornamental stones used in pre-Ottoman mosques of Cairo.
"A monumental achievement! I am amazed at the amount of reading the author has done among such a large and polyglot collection of sources. Researchers will be quarrying the footnotes for years to come. Anyone interested in archaeology or history in the Mediterranean (and farther afield, of course) will find this to be an indispensible work of reference. I am filled with admiration."
Dr David Whitehouse, Executive Director and Curator of Ancient & Islamic Glass, Corning Museum of Glass; and sometime Director of the British Institute of Afghan Studies, and the British School at Rome.
All those interested in the impact of the monuments of Antiquity, in the architectural history of Byzantium and Islam and the sources and development of their material culture, as well as in the origins of museums.