The course aims to examine the topic of ceramic production and distribution in Italy from the 5th to the 16th century AD. Some key lectures will introduce the students to a general view of all the late Roman red slip wares and amphora of Mediterranean kilns we find in Italian archaeological contexts between the 5th and 7th century AD. An overview of the contemporary regional productions will complete this part. After, we shall analyse the making of the regional productions during the early middle ages, and their morphological reduction (7th to 10th century AD). We shall focus on the various outputs of the vanishing late Roman system. Then, we shall analyse the high medieval new Mediterranean stuffs from Islamic and Byzantine regions: glazed, slipped and maiolica wares (11th to 12th centuries). In addition, we shall look at the making of contemporary Italian wares with these new techniques, and the rich Italian regional contexts. At the end, we shall look at the making of the regional states: from the Norman south to the Venetian expansion in the inland. The late middle ages and the early modern era witness the birth of many, new production centres, the large diffusion of the new techniques and a radical change in the function of pottery.
Besides the historical survey, we shall analyse topics more attached to pottery production, to its role within the kitchen, the table, and the storage. This is a way to introduce the diet, the technology, the exchanges.
The traditional lectures will be completed by some lectures in library and in laboratory. There the students will learn how scholars used to publich pottery and to analyse the pottery itslef. At the end the students will have a half-day visit to the MUSEOLAB of the town of Grosseto, where pottery from 10tj to 19th c. AD is exhibited.