Book: Local Experiences of Connectivity and Mobility in the Ancient West-Central Mediterranean
Chapter: 3. Human Mobility between Italy and NE Hispania during the Late Republican Period
Mobility and connectivity are core components of archaeological research in the Iberian Peninsula. Two diametrically opposed positions predominate. The first one argues that an important influx of Italians, a ‘migratory flow,’ settled in Hispania after the Second Punic War. The second position minimizes the scale of migratory flows to the Iberian Peninsula. In this chapter, I examine the epigraphic record (2nd-early 1st c. BC) of five Republican cities in northeast Spain as well as numismatic and genetic evidence. I argue that, in the northeast of the Iberian Peninsula, a large degree of long-distance mobility is inferred when in reality what we see is a limited mobility that sustained a high degree of connectivity. Permanent mobility did exist, but was minimal and concentrated primarily in Tarraco. The chapter shows the importance of studying connectivity and mobility outside the traditional large-scale colonization narratives, paying attention to regional studies and to how local communities experienced immigration.