Nostoi is a project at the crossroads between the archaeology of techniques and the history of ancient institutions. It aims to make full use of analytical methods developed in the framework of the project « La production céramique dans le monde méditerranéen ancien ».
This development opened up the possibility of exploring on a new basis the interaction between production practices and the institutional world. The idea that beyond the internal logic of the technical sphere, which can bring about a cetain homogenisation (routine, standardisation), it is possible that instituions impose that production follows a metrology creating what one can call “normalisation”.
The project aims to analysis the volumetric capacity and efficiency of ancient containers. Through the 3D modeling of containers from 2D drawings, we gather quantitative data concerning the capacities of ancient vessels while metrological analysis help to determine if volumetric units are structuring each given sample.
The goal of this project is to discuss the process leading to the possible meaning of such a unit: result of the repetition of a technical gesture or real metrology betraying the influence of an external authority possessing a capacity of control.