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Ortalli J., Archeologia e ambiente: dominio delle acque e dominio sulle acque in antiche città del territorio padano. (IT
Since antiquity the management of waters was extremely important for the planning and development of human settlements in accordance with the local environmental conditions. Archaeological data from Emilia Romanga, Italy, well illustrate the changes that occurred in cycles between the late antiquity and the II millennia AC. The first recorded significant manipulation/use of surficial waters has been recorded in fortified village of the Bronze Age. It is however from the IX to V centuries BC that the Etruscans established well
planned, extensive hydraulic works within their cities and in the surrounding territories. That was followed by a dark period during the
Celtic occupation of the regions, during which the various hydraulic works, such as irrigation canals were not maintained and much
became obsolete. The subsequent conquest and colonization by Romans led to the revival of older settlements, funding of new
towns, major aqueducts, and, among others, training of streams, construction of irrigation systems, draining of marshlands, d development of harbours. Roman sought a most beneficial natural resources taming but trying to avoid irreparable deterioration of the environment. A sort of equilibrium between human settlements and the landscape was established that lasted for several centuries until the late stages of the Roman Imperial period when maintenance of the water works decreased. A new major decadence followed during early medieval times with the disinterest in properly maintaining the anthropic environment.
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