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France and christian Spain

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Chapter Summary

This chapter falls into two main sections. The first provides an overview of the use of marble in France and Christian Spain. Evidence in Spain is sparse indeed, although there is always the suspicion that many marble-rich Visigothic monuments were dismantled so that their materials could be used in Muslim palaces and mosques. The second section examines the mechanics of survival and revival in two of the marble-rich erstwhile Roman areas of France, namely the cities of Arles and Narbonne. Here exceptionally rich collections of municipal archives survive, backed by the documentation and accounts of local antiquaries. All these allow us to chart how antiquities were handled during the population changes of the period, when prosperity spelled destruction for the antiquities, and stagnation survival. The chapter studies how antiquities from public monuments and frequently from late-antique city walls were incorporated into mediaeval buildings.

Keywords: Arles; Christian Spain; France; late-antique city walls; Marble; mediaeval buildings; Muslim mosques; Muslim palaces; Narbonne; public monuments



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