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Archéologie de l’espace urbain

Elisabeth Lorans
Xavier Rodier


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Urban archaeology in Toulouse: Achievements and prospects 2002-2012

1 Olivier Gaiffe, Lionel Izac-Imbert and Pierre Pisani

2The Toulouse metropolitan area covers an surface of 465km². It comprises 37 municipalities with a population of more than 714,000 inhabitants. It provides a valuable experimental laboratory for urban archaeology. We provide a methodological overview of a decade of preventive archaeology in the heart of this vast European metropolis. Toulouse contains all the elements of urban phenomena. Set on a plain, it was first settled in the Iron Age. Under the Roman Empire, it had the status of civitas, later becoming the capital of the Visigothic Kingdom. It also held an important position during the Middle Ages and Modern times. Following a critical review, we discuss the prospects for incorporating archaeological projects in urban development.

From urban excavations to the archaeology of the town: the case of Chartres

3 Dominique Joly

4Archaeological studies have been carried out in the city of Chartres since the mid-1970s. Revision of the statutory framework of archaeology in 2003 led to a sharp increase in the number of operations in the ancient urban space and its periphery. More than 420 operations have been carried out since 1975, yielding a considerable amount of information. We present the main findings and new knowledge, illustrating the potential of this accumulated data. A large municipal archaeology department contains data management tools and analysis expertise. However, while data for some plots have been processed on an ad hoc basis, the collections still need to be checked prior to carrying out synthesis studies.

What 30 years of preventive archaeology in Reims has taught us about its urban structure, from the late Gaul era to the 4th century AD

5 François Berthelot, Maxence Poirier and Philippe Rollet

6Preventive archaeology in Reims over the last 30 years has produced a considerable amount of data about the capital of the Gallia Belgica province, offering a new vision of the urban outline. The main changes to the urban structure can be seen through successive enclosures, street networks, housing and monumental buildings. A pattern of urbanization and development of the outer districts and the ancient city centre can be seen in the way the urban space was divided up and modified. The insulae in Reims were among the largest in the Roman Empire. Analysis of their spatial organization, the way they were divided up, and the outline of the buildings all suggest the existence of housing estates and town planning regulations.

From Augustonemetum to Clermont-Ferrand: a morphological study

7 Emmanuel Grélois

8The urban area of Clermont-Ferrand today is the product of the incomplete fusion of four nuclei: the city of Clermont, the boroughs of St. Alyre Abbey, Chamalières within the Roman suburbium, and lastly the new medieval town of Montferrand. The 13th century wall encircling the existing built sites left several earlier Church complexes and later housing developments outside. The unoccupied spaces were settled first by Counter-Reformation convents, then by modern industrial developments that prevented the development of densely populated neighbourhoods. As a result, the fusion of the two towns, Clermont and Montferrand, first planned in the 16th century, has never been achieved, and the centre of gravity of the Auvergne capital has moved gradually East over the last two thousand years.

Marseilles, between heritage and renewal

9 Philippe Mellinand, Françoise Paone and Bernard Sillano

10Marseilles, founded in the year 600 BC, has evolved in the same setting over 26 centuries. The urban landscape was shaped by the uneven topography of the site and the presence of the sea; these aspects have also conditioned the orientation patterns since Antiquity, some perennial, some of which have evolved and some of which have disappeared. Periods of extension and creation of new districts were followed by times of desertion. These pulsations of the city in the course of history are revealed through changes in orientation and layout of streets and buildings. In 1660 the city extended beyond the boundaries which had been almost unchanged since the Greek period, generating important changes at both urban and sociological levels.

Interdisciplinary approach of a Normandy town: the archaeological potential of Bayeux (Calvados) from Antiquity to the early Middle Ages

11 Grégory Schütz, Charles-Édouard Sauvin, Quentin Borderie, Aurélien Piolot and Julien Thiesson

12The urban organisation and dynamics of Bayeux are still largely unknown. Recent excavations, following on from research carried out since the 1980s, have taken an interdisciplinary approach, illustrated by the case study of the excavation at 10 rue Franche. This approach sheds light on changes in land use of the excavation site and of the former urbanized area, highlighting the archaeological potential of the city. It also allows further analysis of previous data, providing a clearer picture of the town as a whole.

New data on the ancient city plan of Damascus

13 Hammam Saad and Christophe Benech

14From its long history, the old city of Damascus has retained a significant heritage from the medieval period. However, the urban network was deeply influenced by the orthogonal plan established during the Classical period. This paper presents our current knowledge of this city plan and new results obtained by directional filtering of the digitized cadastral map. The aim of this approach is to examine new discoveries resulting from rescue excavations in the old city which have significantly changed our vision of the organization of the city since Roman times.

The application of urban archaeology to an archaeological site. The example of Angkor Thom (Cambodia), capital of the Angkorean Khmer kingdom

15 Jacques Gaucher and Philippe Husi

16During the 20th century, scholars focused their attention on textual sources and the temples of Angkor. The capital city of the Kingdom, Angkor Thom, a vast 9 km² site enclosed by a monumental wall and covered by tropical forest, had not been discovered. Taking the soil archive as the main archaeological source and the entire extent of the city as field study, a new urban archaeology research programme using systematic coring and surface surveys has revealed the urban plan of the city, characterized by geometric patterns, a sophisticated water-supply system, and occupational density. The main priority for further studies is to create an explanatory model of the formation of the city based on plan analysis, water-management systems, stratigraphical excavations, 14C dating and chronotypology of Khmer ceramics found on the site.

Castalia: the archaeological map of Barcelona. A management and research tool to reassess the historic topography of the city

17 Carme Miró i Alaix

18Barcelona has both a long history and a very rich cultural heritage, and urban archaeology activity in the city has thus always been very intense. In order to manage this archaeological heritage and to ensure quality information for further research, a GIStool, CASTALIA, is being developed. The purpose of this archaeological map is to generate information about the archaeological heritage of the city, with a view to producing a document essentially oriented on the analysis, diagnosis and evaluation of stratigraphic deposits of the subsoil and built heritage, in relation to urban management of the city. The project includes comprehensive documentation and research on diagnosis. It assesses the archaeological potential of the site; more than just a management tool, it is a means of reflecting on the city.

SIGArH: archaeological and historical GIS in Bordeaux

19 Olivier Bigot and Hélène Mousset

20This project brings together partners from the regional Archaeology Department, the University of Bordeaux 3, the Inrap, the City of Bordeaux and the IGN to collect data about the town from protohistory to the 20th century. The purpose is to study the dynamic evolution of the city, integrating data and investigations in a mutualized system. The hierarchical system of entities connects small structures to their urban ensembles, verified by tree view and maps on various scales. SIGArH brings together two chronologies: one connected to a social function, the other to the urban landscape. Examples highlight some analysis methods: a test carried out on a block using a Gantt chart, and findings on the topics of “tenures” and streets.

A new tool for understanding medieval Paris: the GIS ALPAGE

21 Hélène Noizet and Boris Bove

22The aim of the ALPAGE project is to produce data and tools to understand the long-term relationships between spaces and societies in ancient Paris. Several researchers have worked together to create a Geographic Information System for the Paris area in the preindustrial period. This system has been used to reconstruct the oldest parcel plan of Paris, the Atlas made by Vasserot between 1810-1836, and to spatialise historical data from the Middle Ages and modern times (walls, mansions, sewers, floods, manors, parishes, etc.). The paper focuses on the heritage of the enclosure of the urban fabric in the 10th century, the demographic density of the town around 1300, and the manorial hierarchy at the end of the Middle Ages.

Water management in the Parisian urban fabric from the 1st to 19th centuries

23 Léa Hermenault and Laurent Mirlou

24Mapping of the data obtained from the study of archaeological, written and planimetric documentation (especially the “Atlas Vasserot” which has been vectorized in ANR’s “ALPAGE” program coordinated by H. Noizet) provides new opportunities for research on the urban fabric of Paris. The shifting of the city centre from the left to the right bank during the Middle Ages, and its impact on long-term urban growth, can be shown by spatialization of data about access to water and water management. It indicates that access to the Seine structured the surrounding urban space in various ways between the 1st and 13th centuries. It also shows that information about the water supply and drainage networks (fountains, wells, sewers) can help understand the urban dynamics on both banks of the Seine between the 12th and 19th centuries.

The spatial vocabulary of Angers between the 8th and the 12th century

25 Benjamin Lefèvre

26Analysis of the words used to describe space shows how society represents the town. Words used to describe Angers are civitas, urbs and suburbium. The meaning of civitas and urbs converged at the beginning of the period and was then reversed during the 11th and 12th centuries, as shown by comparative analysis of use of the terms by the count and the bishop. Suburbium is the area built around the town and is used by people established there, although some autonomous suburbiae are mentioned. These analyses are used to create graphic models showing the relative positions of districts in Angers.

Patterns of urban space in Tours: new data, new questions (1st to 10th centuries AD)

27 Élisabeth Lorans, Anne-Marie Jouquand, Nicolas Fouillet and Xavier Rodier

28Recent results from several rescue excavations carried out in Tours by Inrap archaeologists provide insight into the changing urban space over the course of more than a millennium, from the late Iron Age to around 1000 AD. Seen in relation to the questions posed in the conclusion of the synthesis work edited by Henri Galinié and published in 2007, they shed new light on our knowledge of the urban environment. This new knowledge relates to the layout of building plots in the monumental centre of the antique settlement, fluctuations in the course followed by the Loire, and lastly to occupation between late Antiquity and the early Middle Ages. This newly acquired information applies first and foremost to the centre and west of the ancient settlement, and gives rise to new models of interpretation.

Châteauneuf (Tours): Building an urban identity in the 10th-12th centuries

29 Émeline Marot

30The medieval town that developed around the collegiate church of Saint Martin (west of Tours) was the centre of important political and social changes in the 10th-12th centuries. The buildings in the Châteauneuf area gradually created a strong and developing sense of urban identity. The construction of a fortification in the 10th century reveals the desire for independence from the city of Tours. A unified urban entity took shape, including religious and lay areas. The wealthiest inhabitants became involved in urban management in the 12th century and they built opulent houses. Some of these were built close to the fortification, suggesting that the wall symbolized a new urban identity in response to social and political changes of the time.

Dark earth: a study of the complex stratification processes related to the occupation of urban space

31 Quentin Borderie, Mélanie Fondrillon, Cristiano Nicosia, Yannick Devos and Richard I. Macphail

32Dark earth is a thick layer of urban soil with a homogeneous appearance. It is an important source of information about urban forms in the Early Middle Ages in Europe. For a long time it was ignored, or sometimes incorrectly interpreted as evidence of towns that had been abandoned or been used for agriculture, but the excavation and precise analysis of these deposits reveal the complexity of how space was occupied between the 4th and 11th centuries. A number of experiments, some dating back to the 1970s, provide the methodological foundation for the development and systematisation of inter-disciplinary study protocols of recent operations.

33By precise observation of the lateral and vertical variations of deposits, the stratigraphic excavation of dark earth can be used to determine when these soils were deposited and the nature of the activities that produced them. The fields of study involved include ceramology, geoarcheology, archeozoology, and archeobotanics. Recently, the aggregation of these data and analysis of the three-dimensional organisation of the deposits, combined with semi-quantitative methods (counting macro-and micro-constituents), have provided greater insight into how these deposits were formed and the organisation of space. Overall, the results show that dark earth provides evidence of phenomena of accretion and bioturbation, and of local organic waste. These patterns are related to very varied activities, outside (horticulture, penning, midden, etc.) or inside (housing, craft production, etc.), revealing the variability over time of dark earth phenomena, as well as the regular, and sometimes long-term, occupation of the space. These results highlight the importance of developing new methodological tools to identify in greater detail when and how deposits were formed (study of archaeological materials, laboratory datings, etc.), and also to determine with greater precision the activities and methods of waste management (organic or metallic pollution).

Reconstructing past land use from dark earth: examples from England and France

34 Richard I. Macphail

35Soil micromorphology and micro-and bulk-chemical techniques have been applied to dark earth investigations for three decades. These methods have been successful both in identifying the origins of dark earth (e.g. weathering of, and soil formation in, earth-and lime-based constructional materials, domestic and artisan waste, etc.) and in showing how dark earth records use of urban space through time at individual sites and at different locations. Examples are given to demonstrate details of changing land use at Prosper-Mérimée Square, Tours, from Late Antiquity to early medieval times, compared to the small resettled town of Tarquimpol (Moselle), where dark earth records short-lived Late Antique occupation (~100 yrs). Late Roman, Saxon and early medieval dark earth sequences from Anderitum (Pevensey Castle), Canterbury, Winchester and numerous London locations provide analogous data, further aiding our interpretation of populations and activities. Examples of dark earth formation trajectories are given in Table 1.

A synthesis of urban archaeology – an on-going project

36 Quentin Borderie, Jeanne Delahaye, Bruno Desachy, Julie Gravier and Anaïs Pinhède

37Three Master degrees were completed in 2012 at the University of Paris 1; their subjects were the archaeological urban sites of Chartres, Noyon and Le Mans. These studies used a common method, with free GIS tools and relational databases. The aim was to update the documents for evaluating the archaeological heritage of French towns, which are based on principles first drawn up in The Future of London’s Past in 1973, and used in France for 25 years by the National Centre of urban archaeology. In particular, the method applies the notion of urban functional entity to analyse the historic urban space. This article presents some methodological aspects and initial results.

Assessing and modelling archaeological deposits in Bourges. A geotechnical research project

38 Mélanie Fondrillon, Laurence Augier, Amélie Laurent and Xavier Rolland

39This research is based on urban topography studies and rescue archaeology data collected in Bourges since the 1980s. It aims to assess the informative potential of urban soil by modelling the substratum, measuring the depth of archaeological deposits and identifying distinct functional activities to provide the intensity and use of urban space. The approach is based on the use of a geotechnical tool, the PANDA® penetrometer. The first study involved excavation of the Avaricum Urban Development Zone, with the aim of drawing up a reference framework to identify natural and human deposits and different layers in the urban soil. This tool is now available for new studies and sites throughout the Bourges urban space.

The periodization of urban history: a study based on the Atlas Historique des villes de France

40 Bastien Lefebvre

41For the historian, periodization involves identifying turning-points in history to give time a meaningful structure. This paper investigates the periodization of urban topography as illustrated in the 49 volumes of the Atlas historiques des villes de France. This work divides history into periods but the turning points are treated as self-evident and are rarely justified. The moments that mark the transformation of cities are heterogeneous and refer to political, social, economic or topographic events. This study examines the nature of the events used to create this division of time. Furthermore, based on temporal analysis of the information, it discusses the relationships between the periodized timeline of the cities and the academic divisions of history.

Reasoning about time: issues and feedback from experiences

42 Jean-Yves Blaise and Iwona Dudek

43This paper discusses how heritage architecture analysts handle time. It argues first that we are not equally equipped (in terms of concepts and formalisms) to handle space and time, in particular when dealing with historical data sets in which missing and uncertain information can be critical. It then focuses on time and on the recent contribution of visual analytics to the problems of time-oriented data and the uncertainty issue. We then propose a categorisation of the notion of uncertainty, and finally introduce and exemplify generic characteristics of time to reinforce the analyst’s capacity to perform cumulative, comparison-rich, reasoning tasks.

Chrono-chorematics, a new method for visualizing and investigating urban structure

44 Bruno Desachy and Géraldine Djament-Tran

45Chrono-chorematics, based on Roger Brunet’s notion of “chorems”, is a method of visualizing spatial organization from a historical point of view. It breaks down the structures of urban space into its component parts in order to analyze the production of urban space. This article presents the origins of this pluridisciplinary method and the methodology of the urban chrono-chorematic workshop of the National Center for Urban Archaeology (CNAU-Centre national d’archéologie urbaine) (graphic language, timeline of a model of French urban development, moving from the general to the specific) and its epistemological issues. The modeling creates chorotypes and formalizes comparisons between cities and urban trajectories.

Le Mans: urban chrono-chorematic approach (1st century BC – 18th century)

46 Hugo Meunier

47Applying the urban chrono-chorematic method to the city of Le Mans reveals similarities with the theoretical models developed by the CNAU’s research team. Occupied before the Roman Conquest, the area developed on a spur at the confluence of the river Sarthe and the Isaac. The city was medium-sized but it was an important political centre due to its strategic location in Western France. During the Early Roman Empire it was an open city, but by the end of the 3rd century the urban areas had shrunk to the fortified promontory. Later, Le Mans became the seat of a bishopric and seemed to be dynamic in the Early Middle Ages. Small market towns (burgi) developed around communication routes and religious centres, strongly marking the landscape until the morphological changes which took place during the 19th century.

Chrono-chorematic study of the preindustrial city of Reims (1st century BC to 19th century)

48 Claire Pichard

49For historians, Reims appears to have developed in a linear manner, from the oppidum to the preindustrial city. However, this view obscures important variations in the administrative functions of the city over long time periods. It also ignores the contrast between the vast Roman civitas and the more modest sizes of the medieval and modern cities. Located on the river Vesle between the plain of Champagne and the plateau of the Ile de France, Reims is on an important trade route. However, the fact that it is not on a major river can appear surpising, as can the fact that the town only developed on the right bank of the Vesle up to the 19th century. The chrono-chorematic model covers 1800 years of the history of Reims, from the Augustan town to the preindustrial city. The models not only show some structural continuity, but also transformations such as the transition from a bipolar town to an enclosed city forming a single urban entity. Comparing each chorotype to the ideal-type chorem leads us to consider the appearance of general phenomena such as the Christianized space and the successive ramparts. It also reveals the specificities of the city and raises the question of its medieval inheritance and the development of its political and economic functions.

A chrono-chorematic study of Bordeaux

50 Véronique André-Lamat, Ézéchiel Jean-Courret, Sandrine Lavaud and Olivier Pissoat

51Chrono-chorematic modelling in Bordeaux is based on the Atlas historique de Bordeaux from which eleven significant phases of urban fabric up to 1980 were extracted. The approach is multi-disciplinary. The components and phases of the theoretical model required adaptation for use with a major city.–Subject of the study: To understand urban fabric over the long term, replacing a strictly urban approach for a broader view of the city/territory.

  • Semiotic processing of functions: to characterize urban features, cultural functions have been separated from political, religious and economic functions.
  • Sequencing and defining phases: the discrepancy between the eleven local phases and the eight phases of the theoretical model led us to reorganize the theoretical phasing (naming the phases; removing the oppidum; adding a Carolingian model of a newlycentered city, etc.).

A chrono-chorematic study of the city

52 Bruno Dufaÿ and Christian Grataloup

53The graphical modelling of cities over time (chrono-chorematics) was initiated in the early 2000s by a group of archaeologists, historians and geographers, under the auspices of the Ministry for Culture and Communication.

54The key issue of the method is the use of the chorotype, moving from specific examples of real towns to general explanatory models. This process looks at space and time together, deconstructing our knowledge and perceived ideas. This fosters a healthy critical view, allowing city planners and residents to think about their town with a clearer understanding. Inital results of the study of ten French cities indicate the heuristic value of this method, showing how size, street networks and multipolarity change over time. However, the process is not yet finalized, and many methodological issues need to be clarified.

Production of urban space north of the Alps during the second Iron Age

55 Michel Vaginay

56The present paper draws on approaches developed by the anthropology of space to understand the genesis and dynamics of the city between the 3rd century BC and the Augustan period. Archaeological and historical data are viewed from the perspective of the production of space. The analysis suggests that the development of agriculture, placed in its societal context, constitutes one of the major vectors of change from the 4th century BC, leading to the development of collective practices and specialized craft industries, the emergence of cities and of a new political constitution, the civitas, and finally to oppida which appear to be a late form of urban settlement during the second Iron Age in Gaul.

The age of towns-urban dynamics in the Celtic societies of temperate Europe (6th – 1st centuries BC)

57 Sophie Krausz

58Only thirty years ago, a common research question was whether Iron Age oppida were towns or fortified refuges. Archaeological excavations undertaken widely across Europe have made this question redundant: the oppida, set within their monumental ramparts, and with commercial and political functions, are clearly towns, including those which Caesar attacked in the middle of the first century BC. The key research question today concerns the conditions that underpinned the start of these towns which took shape around the end of the 2nd century BC (c. 120/100 BC) in temperate Europe. But this phenomenon was neither the beginning of this trend nor unique in Iron Age Celtic societies. From the 6th century BC, the emergence of princely complexes such as Vix in Burgundy, the Heuneburg in Baden-Wurttemberg and Bourges in Berry, demonstrates the appearance of agglomerations which extended to tens, if not hundreds, of hectares. During the last five centuries BC, Iron Age temperate Europe witnessed a succession of different urban types. Archaeological evidence demonstrates that these two phases of urbanisation are separate from each other; and it is now clear that the second is not the product of the evolution of the first.

The supply system of medieval towns (11th-16th centuries) in the North of France: comparative analysis of Tours, Paris and Strasbourg based on pottery studies

59 Yves Henigfeld, Philippe Husi, Fabienne Ravoire and Lise Bellanger

60The study of medieval pottery in the North of France has given archaeologists the opportunity to review the acquisition of goods for urban markets from the 12th to the 16th century. Using three well-documented pottery ensembles (Paris, Tours and Strasbourg) it has been possible to undertake a quantified synthesis in order to define the place of pottery in urban society during the medieval period. The following issues are addressed: the extent to which the observed mechanisms in urban centres differ, and whether they can be defined as a system of acquisition. This comparative study based on statistical analysis provides some answers.

The network of ancient settlements in the cities of central Gaul

61 Christian Cribellier

62In the final decades before the conquest of Gaul, several settlements, other than farms, developed outside the oppida. In the centre of Gaul, the principle towns and the settlements dependent on them emerged gradually from the 1st century AD, sometimes on previously occupied sites. A range of sites developed, from true towns, which developed continuously up to the contemporary period, to small market towns (bourgades) which mostly disappeared before the end of the Classical period. One criterion for evaluating sites is their surface area, varying from a few hectares to over 200 hectares for the main administrative towns. The largest developed on the main communication routes, constituting a structural feature of a network made up of economic and religious elements, interacting with the rest of the city’s territory. Their trajectories, from the end of the Gaulish period up to the late Classical period, follow different patterns: for example, on-going occupation, shift, or desertion during the medieval period. The network of towns was unstable and many disappeared before the end of the 3rd century, notably small settlements that were created late on. Highly developed towns with multiple urban functions that were under the authority of the provincial capitals were distributed throughout the region, 50 to 80 kms apart. Towns with important productive activities or religious functions grew up within a radius of 15 to 25 kms of the provincial capitals, mostly on well-defined road networks. Between these were the smallest, often ephemeral, sites, with no specific organization.

MorphAL (Morphological Analysis): a tool for analyzing urban morphology

63 Sandrine Robert, Éric Grosso, Pascal Chareille and Hélène Noizet

64Until recently, morphological urban analysis, particularly of land plots, required costly manual data manipulation or relied on unshared tools which were inaccessible to users. To facilitate this analysis, the MorphAL software (MorphAL for Morphological Analyis) has been developed to automate a set of processes and indicator calculations in order to characterise the morphology of the urban tissue from vector data. MorphAL has been released under open source licence to ensure free access to users. The technical specificities are presented together with the first results obtained from an analysis of the Paris area.

Modeling of a multi-scalar urban space over the long term: the case of the district of the abbey church of the Trinity, Vendôme (Loir-et-Cher)

65 Gaël Simon

66The material reality of a city over a long period can be viewed from two perspectives: the built area (garden, home, church, etc.) and the urban function (abbey, shop, factory, barracks, etc.). Thus, within the same area there are two coexisting realities, two constantly interacting historical objects each with their own time. Using the example of the district of the Abbey of the Trinity in Vendôme (Loir-et-Cher), we highlight the dialectical relationship between these two realities, in other words, the extent to which the built area was restructured by functional changes of the urban space (e.g. the construction of an abbey and the founding of an adjacent town in the 11th century, the Maurist reform in the 17th century, the Revolution and the construction of military barracks).

Spatial modelling of an ancient urban network: the towns in the city territory of Nîmes

67 Pierre Garmy and Lahouari Kaddouri

68One of the most sensitive questions faced by archaeologists when studying ancient urban networks concerns hierarchical relationships within them; however, it is extremely important to identify the rank of each town within its network in order to be able to simulate its spatial interactions with all the other towns and the region.

69After several experiments, first with the apparent functions and impacts of the towns around Bordeaux, then in the territory of the city of Luteva (Lodève) with only the ground coverage of each settlement, it appeared useful to test a multiple criteria classification of the 34 ancient towns administered by Nemausus (Nîmes). We therefore carried out a study of the network and of the region in order to describe the population structure, in terms of accessibility, centrality and spatial interactions.

Town system and system of towns: dynamic models in archeaology and geography

70 Hélène Mathian, Xavier Rodier and Lena Sanders

71The systemic approach has proven fruitful in both archeaology and geography to study objects of different scales. Indeed, a city can be considered as a system in itself or as part of a system of cities. However, this systemic approach of intra- and inter-urban space is understood differently in geography and archeaology: different temporalities involve different perspectives on sustainability and transitions from one system to another. Based on collaboration between the two disciplines, we review the approaches and models used by each of them individually and together to study the dynamics of urban space. In geography it means adapting concepts of spatial analysis to take into account large time spans where semantic changes may operate in the entities under study. For the historical sciences, the issues concern the appropriation of space taking a modeling approach in order to shift from the recording of elements of historical topography in space and time as simple supports to the study of spatial transformations and temporal trajectories.

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