Timgad, an ancient Roman city

September 15, 2022

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“The ruins of Timgad lies on the slopes of the Aures Massif, about 35 km east of the town of Batna, in modern-day Algeria. Built nearly 2,000 years ago, by the Roman Emperor Trajan, the city is laid out in great precision and is one of the best surviving examples of the grid plan used by the ancient Roman city planners.” (amusingplanet.com)

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~ originally founded as a military colony
~ intended to serve as a bastion against the Berbers in the nearby Aures Mountains
~ original residents were largely Parthian veterans of the Roman army who were granted lands in return for years of service
~ the city’s original design was a perfect square, 355 meters long on each side, with an orthogonal design highlighted by the decumanus maximus (east-west-oriented street) and the cardo (north–south-oriented street) lined by a partially restored Corinthian colonnade
~ the city grew in size for 300 years, new quarters being built as needed, eventually quadrupling in size
~ Timgad fell into decline after the Vandal invasion in the 5th century and the subsequent sacking by Berbers

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“All these centuries lying under the sand of the Sahara, Timgad remained exceptionally well preserved. At the west end of the decumanus maximus still stands a 12-meters-high triumphal arch, called the Arch of Trajan, which was partially restored in 1900. There a temple dedicated to Jupiter that is of approximately the same dimensions as the Pantheon in Rome. A large Byzantine citadel stands to the southeast of the city. There is also a 3,500-seat theater in good condition, a library, a basilica and four public bath houses.” (amusingplanet.com)

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The city was buried for 1,000 years before it was “discovered” or rediscovered…however you want to put it. Excavations of the city led to its designation as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1982.

It boggles the mind to think how much sand it took to bury the city, and preserve it the way it did!

hope you have a great day!
thanks for stopping by!!

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