Roman water evacuation structures. Assessment of functionalities and building techniques present at Mirobriga (Santiago do Cacém, Portugal)

Activity: Talk or presentationOral presentation


While analysing two of Ulpianus’ passages in the edict De Cloacis, namely (Dig. and (Dig., we can infer that in Antiquity all evacuation structures would have been encompassed under a single term, «cloaca». However, given the diversity in size, construction, and function of the existing remains, it becomes impractical for modern investigation to refer to all using the same designation.
In this presentation, we analyse the different evacuation structures related to the evacuation of rain and wastewater that have been identified in the town of Mirobriga (Santiago do Cacém, Portugal) and the role each of them played in the town’s evacuation system. Comparing the construction of main conducts, secondary branches, and pipes, and confronting the results with the type of residue that was evacuated and the sort of building they were located, we make a tentative effort to determine the degree of specialization, or multifunctionality of each type of structure.
Period1 Sept 2022
Event titleEAA Annual Meeting Session #222 - Ad Salubritatem Civitatum : The Archaeology of Water Evacuation Infrastructures in Roman Urban Settlements
Event typeConference
Conference number222
LocationBudapest, HungaryShow on map
Degree of RecognitionInternational


  • Sanitation
  • Cloaca
  • Fistula
  • Plumbing
  • Lusitania