Isabel María Sánchez Ramos

junior fellow
EURIAS cohort 2016/2017
discipline Archaeology
PhD. Researcher, University of Córdoba; Associate Member of Ausonius Institute of Bordeaux

Research project

Cultural Identities during the Late Antiquity: The Episcopal Territory at the Beginning of the Medieval Landscapes


The urban landscape inherited from the classical world and its transformation will be taken as a starting point to understand which elements changed and which persisted in Late Antique Roman cities. In this new reality under construction, Christianity was the most determining and influential element in transforming urban societies. The spread of early Christianity throughout the territories of the future Europe was essentially based on the establishment of bishoprics, materialized in the construction of large Episcopal groups. As bishoprics were the new centres of power, it is key to learn about them to understand the development of medieval cities in Europe and the western Mediterranean. 


The scientific approach of this research is the fruit of consolidated research experience in the Urban Structure and Archaeology of Late Antiquity and the Early Middle Ages in the Iberian Peninsula, building on the results obtained by other European research projects (i.e. The Transformation of the Roman World and European Corpus of Early Medieval Churches). It’s also results from the experimental use of new technologies (i.e. remote sensing and geomatics) to archaeology.

The ultimate and overall aim of the research is to generate new scientific knowledge of the historical cities complexity and make progress in the research of public architecture that corresponds to religious and civil complexes. The main novelty of the work is the multidisciplinary study and approach of Late Antique cities.


Among the Late Antique Episcopal groups documented by archaeologists in present-day Western Europe, the research will focus on conducting interdisciplinary research on than one of ancient Egitania (Idanha-a-Velha, Portugal). Egitania is an exceptional example, as it has an important archaeological heritage whose significance has been acknowledged by the international scientific community. The objective is two-fold: on a micro-regional level, to develop a coherent and comprehensive archaeological reading that enables a better interpretation of the historical sequence; on the macro level, to better understand the development of ecclesiastical complexes in the western Mediterranean (i.e. Italy, France, North Africa and Spain) during Late Antiquity. Such complexes are understood as the main urban reference around which the medieval city developed with the cathedral as its core.




Isabel Sánchez Ramos is an Archaeological Researcher and a consolidated specialist in Late Antiquity and Early Medieval periods. She holds a Ph.D in Archaeology from the University of Cordoba. Her main research line is based in understanding the landscape transformations of ancient Roman cities in Western Europe between the collapses of Roman Empire to the early medieval times (AD 4th- 8th c.). She has received several long-term postdoctoral contracts abroad in internationally renowned institutions like the Ausonius Institute of Bordeaux as Marie Curie–Talentia Postdoc, Centre Camille Jullian at Aix-en-Provence and the Spanish Research Council at Rome among other.


Selected publications


'El paisaje urbano de Toledo en la Antigüedad tardía', with R. Barroso et al., Revue Antiquité Tardive, vol. 23, 2015, pp. 329-352.


'Perspectivas para el estudio del territorio episcopal en la Península Ibérica en la Antiguedad tardía', Anales de Prehistoria y Arqueología de la Universidad de Murcia, vol. 30, 2015, pp. 117-127.


'Nueva lectura arqueológica del conjunto episcopal de Egitania (Idanha-a-Velha, Portugal)', with J. Morin, Madrider Mitteilungen, vol. 55, 2015, pp. 398-428.


'Episcopal groups in Hispania', with G. Esparraguera, Oxford Journal of Archaeology, vol. 30, 2011, pp. 273-298.


'Las ciudades de la Bética en la Antigüedad tardía', Antiquité Tardive, vol. 18, 2011, pp. 243-276.



junior fellow
EURIAS promotion 2016/2017
Paris Institute for Advanced Study
discipline Cognition
senior fellow
EURIAS promotion 2017/2018
Paris Institute for Advanced Study
discipline Visual and Performing Arts
junior fellow
EURIAS promotion 2018/2019
Paris Institute for Advanced Study
discipline French Literature
junior fellow
EURIAS promotion 2015/2016
Paris Institute for Advanced Study
discipline Literature