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Porta Grecorum

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Republication  from militaryarchitecture.com

 

Mdina, circa 1565, showing position of gateways and early Hospitaller bastions.Mdina, circa 1565, showing position of gateways and early Hospitaller bastions

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Mdina’s medieval gate.

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Perhaps the most visible and most evident vestige of the medieval defences of Mdina is Greeks Gate, or Porta Grecorum. Although this was not the main entrance into the city, but merely a porta falsa, or secondary gateway that went down directly into the land front ditch, it is nonetheless the only complete medieval entrance in all of the Maltese islands to have survived to the present day and, therefore, tells us much about the nature and workings of fortified medieval entrances.

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Crusader Military engineering: The Templar Fortress of Tartous

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Republication  from Militaryarchitecture.com

6546549Plan of Tartous citadel and fortified city.

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Although largely famous today for its role as a Templar fortress during the time of the Crusades, the site had been equally renowned in antiquity for its strategic and military importance. Tartous was originally founded by the Phoenicians to complement the more secure but the less accessible settlement on the island of Arwad. For a long time it served a secondary role to Arwad, itself a major centre in Seleucid and Roman times. As a matter fact its classical name of Ataradus (meaning ‘anti-Aradus’ or ‘the town facing Aradus’ or Arwad) reflected this secondary role.

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Roman engineering II: The Roman Temple of Évora (Portugal)

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Republication from Following hadrian (by Carole Raddato)

The Roman Temple of Évora (Templo romano de Évora), also referred to as the Templo de Diana (although there is no basis in fact for this designation) is an ancient temple in the historic city of Évora, Portugal. The temple is part of the historical centre of the city, which was included in the classification by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.

In 57 BC, the city was conquered by the Romans who renamed it Liberalitas Julia and expanded it into a walled town. The temple is believed to have been built around the first century AD and was probably erected in honour of emperor Augustus. It was built in the main public square (forum) of Liberalitas Julia.

The temple has undergone numerous changes throughout history. What remains of this structure today is the podium, almost completely preserved and made of granite blocks, an intact colonnade along its northern facade consisting of six columns, four columns to the east and four columns on its western facade.

The Roman Temple of Évora, overview from the north-western corner, Ebora, Lusitania, Portugal © Carole Raddato

The Roman Temple of Évora, the northern facade consisting of six columns
© Carole Raddato

[image not to  be shown here: visit the original source]

The Roman Temple of Évora
© Carole Raddato

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Roman engineering: The Hadrianic aqueduct of Caesarea Maritima, Israel

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Republication from Following hadrian

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Caesarea Maritima is perhaps one of Israel’s most famous attractions. Its ruins are located by the sea-shore of Israel about half way between Tel Aviv and Haifa. It is the site of one of the most important cities of the Roman World, the capital of the province of Judaea. The city was founded between 22 and 10 BC by Herod the Great (37-4 BC) as an urban centre and harbor on the site of the earlier Straton’s Tower. The city has been populated through the late Roman and Byzantine era. Today, Caesarea is a large and beautiful national park and a fascinating place to visit while exploring the Holy Land.

Herod the Great's palace and circus, Caesarea, Israel © Carole Raddato

Herod the Great’s palace and circus, Caesarea
© Carole Raddato

The Judaean port of Caesarea had no reliable source of fresh water when construction on the city began around 22 BC. King Herod commissioned a raised aqueduct to deliver water from the springs near Shuni, 16 kilometers north-east of Caesarea Maritima. Today, the most impressive part of the Herodian aqueduct (known as the high-level aqueduct I) can be seen on the beach of Caesarea, north of the ancient city.

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