Imperial reflection

Imperial Reflection: Public Reflection in Roman and Mauryan Empire (Goran Đurđević, Capital Normal University)

1:00pm - 2:00pm / Thursday 22nd October 2020
Type: Webinar / Category: Department
  • Admission: Free. Please email Rachael Cornwell ( or Daniel Lowes ( for the Zoom link.
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Public reflection is a concept based on seven conditions (size of objects, fixed location, changeable directions, collective and individual appearance, time, space, environment and landscape and additional function) and this idea can be understood as an imperial tool for spreading power and re-creating imagined space that is a combination of history, territory and cosmology. It is applied to polished stones (marble) monuments and buildings such as the Forum Augustum, the Basilica Aemilia, the temple of Apollo Palatinus, the temple of Castor and the temple of Concord in the Forum Romanum, water surfaces and obelisk Solarium Augusti in the Roman Empire (particularly in reign of Augustus) and water surfaces, irrigation tanks and polished stones (Ashoka’s pillars and walls in Barabar caves) in the Mauryan empire (322 BCE - 185 BCE) in Indian subcontinent. The usage of reflection is multiple and these objects functioned as mirrors, surveillance tools, decoration and ideological symbols of empire and imperial power. This phenomena where peculiar situated surfaces (water, glistening stones) had the purpose of mirrors is analysed through historical sources, contemporary literature, archaeological objects, architectural remains, epigraphic evidences and natural phenomenon.