Liburnians and Illyrian Lembs: Iron Age Ships of the Eastern Adriatic
by Luka Boršić, Danijel Džino and Irena Radić Rossi. Paperback; 175x245mm; 226 pages; 35 figures, 2 tables, 4 maps (colour throughout). 720 2021. Available both in printed and e-versions.
Printed ISBN 9781789699159. £34.00 (No VAT). Epublication ISBN 9781789699166. £16.00 (Exc. VAT) Institutional Price £34.00 (Exc. UK VAT)
Liburnians and Illyrian Lembs: Iron Age Ships of the Eastern Adriatic explores the origins of two types of ancient ship which appear in the written sources connected with the protohistoric eastern Adriatic area: the ‘Liburnian’ (liburna or liburnica) and the southern Adriatic (Illyrian) ‘lemb’. The relative abundance of written sources suggests that both ships played significant roles in ancient times, especially the Liburnian, which became the main type of light warship in early Roman imperial fleets and ultimately evolved into a generic name for warships in the Roman Imperial period and Late Antiquity. The book provides an extensive overview of written, iconographic and archaeological evidence on eastern Adriatic shipbuilding traditions before the Roman conquest in the late first century BC / early first century AD, questioning the existing scholarly assumption that the liburna and lemb were closely related, or even that they represent two sub-types of the same ship. The analysis shows that identification of the Liburnian liburna and Illyrian lemb as more or less the same ship originates from the stereotypical and essentially wrong assumption in older scholarship that the prehistoric indigenous population of the eastern Adriatic shared the same culture and, roughly, the same identities. The main point made in the book is that two different terms, liburna and lemb, were used in the sources depicting these as two different kinds of ship, rather than being interchangeable terms depicting the same ship type.
About the Authors
Luka Boršić obtained his first PhD degree in philosophy with emphasis on classical languages and his second PhD degree in the history of philosophy. His main areas of research are ancient philosophy, Renaissance philosophy and the birth of modern science, as well as gender philosophy. He is currently Director, and Senior Research Fellow of the Institute of Philosophy in Zagreb. In 2019 he was a Fulbright Scholar at Columbia University in New York, during which period he completed his contribution to this book. His main approach to the history of ideas and history of philosophy is hermeneutics, the endeavour to understand multifaceted layers of historical texts. ;
Danijel Džino is Senior Lecturer in the Department of History and Archaeology at Macquarie University, Sydney. His books include: Illyricum in the Roman Politics 229 BC – AD 68 (CUP, 2010), Becoming Slav, Becoming Croat: Identity Transformation in Post-Roman and Early Medieval Dalmatia (Brill, 2010), From Justinian to Branimir: The Making of the Middle Ages in Dalmatia (Routledge, 2021); he is co-author of Rimski ratovi u Iliriku: Povijesni antinarativ (Zagreb, 2013). Džino is also co-editor of the volumes: Byzantium, its Neighbors and its Cultures (Australian Association for Byzantine Studies, 2014) and Migration, Integration and Connectivity on the Southeastern Frontier of the Carolingian Empire (Brill, 2018). ;
Irena Radić Rossi graduated from the Department of Archaeology of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences of the University of Zagreb. In 2004 she became Senior Conservator, the highest rank in the Cultural Heritage Conservation Service. In 2009 she moved to the University of Zadar, where she is currently employed as Associate Professor. She is an associated researcher of the Centre Camille Jullian (Aix-Marseille Universite, CNRS), an adjunct professor at the Nautical Archaeology Program of the Texas A&M University, and an affiliated scholar of the Institute of Nautical Archaeology. Her main research interests focus on the technological development of Adriatic shipbuilding and seafaring.