Baths at Ostia
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Architect unknown
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Location Ostia, Italy   map
Date circa 150   timeline
Building Type communal baths
 Construction System stone bearing masonry, concrete
Climate mediterranean
Context urban
Style Ancient Roman Corinthian
Notes A cluster of vaulted spaces


Photo, exterior view with colonade

Photo, exterior view of the ruins


Plan Drawing

Detail Drawing

Discussion Baths at Ostia Commentary

"In Ostia 18 public baths have been excavated, a reflection on the changing bathing habits of Romans during the Empire. Some of them are large and imposing structures, for example the Forum Baths, built at the time of Antoninus Pius. The frigidarium is conservative in its layout, with eight columns supporting a vaulted roof and cold plunges to north and south. However, the series of warm and hot rooms which project boldly out from the lines of the old castrum are more interesting. The most westerly is octagonal and presents four big windows to the afternoom sun, which, in the absence of heating pipes in the walls, suggests that it was a heliocaminus or sun room of the type found at Hadrian's villa."

— Frank Sear. Roman Architecture. p127.

Sources on Baths at Ostia

Roger H. Clark and Michael Pause. Precedents in Architecture. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1985. transformation diagram, p208. — Updated edition available at

Donald Corner and Jenny Young. Slide from photographer's collection. PCD.2260.1012.1834.048. PCD.2260.1012.1834.044.

Frank Sear. Roman Architecture. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 1982. ISBN 0-8014-1591-8. LC 82-48715. NA310.S44 1983. discussion p127.

John B. Ward-Perkins. Roman Architecture. New York: Harry N. Abrams, Publishters, 1977. interior photo, f217, p192.

Doreen Yarwood. The Architecture of Europe. New York: Hastings House, 1974. ISBN 0-8038-0364-8. LC 73-11105. NA950.Y37. detail perspective drawing of capital and entablature, fig89, p42. no image credit. top drawing second from the left on the page.

Kevin Matthews. The Great Buildings Collection on CD-ROM. Artifice, 2001. ISBN 0-9667098-4-5.— Available at  Find books about Baths at Ostia


Web Resources
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