This class has examined the various accomplishments of ancient Rome, many that have been carried on throughout time and influenced numerous cultures around the world. Amongst those accomplishments were the development of concrete and the utilization of arches. This paper will examine the Roman development of both concrete and the infamous concrete arch that is utilized in many modern day structures today.
Opus caementicium or Roman concrete is a synthetic construction substance that’s composed of an aggregate, a binding agent, and water. In Rome’s case, as discovered by UC Berkley with the extensive analysis of a sample of Roman concrete taken from a breakwater in Italy’s Pozzuoli Bay it was developed by using lime and volcanic rock which formed a mortar, the mortar and volcanic rock were then packed into wooden forms and when seawater was added a chemical reaction occurred, bonding everything together to create concrete (History, 2013). It is uncertain when Roman concrete was developed, but it was clearly in widespread and customary use from about 150 BC; some scholars believe it was developed a century before that.
Although it is uncertain when opus caementicium was developed, many scholars believe it was developed a century prior to 150 BC (Boëthius, Ling, & Rasmussen, 1978). Opus caementicium was an important development and seen very advantageous in the Roman culture, as it was remarkably sturdy and could extent vast distances when it was shaped into arches. Not only could concrete take the form of arches, however it could be formed into any shape when it was poured into a...
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...dings with absolutely no geometric shape. However, the development of arches that later took on a concrete form make the world a much more beautiful place and makes the buildings much safer to live in. I will add that the world could benefit from turning back the clock and learning the ways of the Romans when it pertains to the materials used to make concrete, according to an analysis done by UC Berkley of the Roman concrete, the materials and the process of making Roman concrete is much more sustainable and environmental friendly. (History, 2013).
Boëthius, A., Ling, R., & Rasmussen, T. (1978). Etruscan and early Roman architecture. New Haven: Yale University Press.
History. (2013). The secrets of ancient Roman Concrete - history in the headlines. Retrieved October 20, 2016, from history, http://www.history.com/news/the-secrets-of-ancient-roman-concrete
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