From the agora to the modern marketplace: food markets as landscapes of pleasure, purpose and plenty in historical review

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


The interplay of landscape and the townscape of food markets has profoundly influenced the shaping of urban and rural space throughout history. Just as food markets themselves have been central to the formation of cities over a very long historical trajectory, their landscapes have expressed and shaped aspects of urban life in complex and diverse ways: spatially, socially, environmentally and economically. An historical review of these interconnections will demonstrate that the relationship of the food market to its landscape is not just about the nature of the market place or market building itself. Those interplays of landscape and place also reflect the influence food markets have across food system loci from production, through distribution to consumption and waste. Through a selection of historic examples from Europe, the Americas, the Middle East, Asia and Africa the very complicated ways that food markets both influence and are influenced by their landscape connections will be explored. Drawing on historical sources including maps, plans, written accounts, visual images and archeological records the chapter will seek to provide some clarity about the historical antecedents of today’s food market landscapes. Encompassing pre-Classical to much more recent historical examples, the chapter will offer an historically informed analysis of the ways that these landscapes of food as both built form and townscape settings contribute to settlement space and social and economic practices relating to food today.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook of Landscape and Food
EditorsTim Waterman, Josh Zeunert
Place of PublicationLondon
ISBN (Print)9781138125155
Publication statusPublished - 4 Mar 2018


  • food
  • landscape
  • marketplaces
  • urbanism


Dive into the research topics of 'From the agora to the modern marketplace: food markets as landscapes of pleasure, purpose and plenty in historical review'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this