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Algeria: 7. Timgad

By gss  
Algeria: 7. Timgad ( Thamugadi or Colonia Marciana Ulpia Traiana Thamugadi), Aures region, Algeria, November 1979, Agfa slide scanned( Continuing the series dedicated to my father photos).

Someone told me, in Algeria, that wherever you dig a little, in the ground, in North Africa, it's impossible not to find a small piece of Roman object. Well, may seem an exaggeration, but it expresses a fact: nowhere, the presence of Rome, was not more structured, dense as the current territory of Maghreb, the former Roman provinces of Cyrenaica, Tripolitania, Africa, and many with the name of Mauretania.
The city of Timgad was built by the Emperor Trajan in 100 A. D. (one year before he started of the first expedition against my ancestors land, Dacia, located at the other end of the Roman world!). The city seems to be built ex nihilo, first as a military camp ( assumption done due to its perfectly Cartesian plan specific to military camps), then as a colony (deductio oppidorum ). Recent research shows its economic character (center of vast olive groves, ordered by Trajan) and population reservoir for the Roman legions, which were stationed a few miles away in the town Lambaesis (today Tazoult Lambese)

The road to this village ( Lambaesis ) initially traverse city walls, through a common gate . Towards the end of the second century , this simple gate was replaced by this monumental triumphal arch constructed with baroque shapes . Although it is known as the Arch of Trajan , judging these unusual forms in the Trajan era , we can understand that it was achieved a century later than the date of the founding of the city, some late decorations were added by the Emperor Septimius Severus ( 193-211 ) what makes us think that he could be the author of the arch , not Trajan. The arch was found by a French archaeological mission in unexpectedly good condition , and in 1900 , he was brought with minimal restoration to the today shapes and details. Since 1982, the town of Timgad and the Arch were included in UNESCO patrimony.
Picture is taken in November 1979 on a fairly cold weather (about 10 degrees ) after a heavy rain that caught us in the north side of Aures mountains ( presented by me in a previous picture ), mountains situated 20 km south of Timgad. On the flanks of the central opening, stand leaning against the Arch legs, me and my mother.

Note that my references go to Wikipedia in English, however if you are interested in the subject, switch to the French version illustrated richer and more complete (if you handle in French ...). Yesterday I found an interesting Algerian photographer who has an excellent website presenting his photos, 99% from Algeria, and has a section dedicated to these fabulous ruins of Timgad. He's portfolio site is very impressive ( has very different subjects). Also there are numerous Youtube video presentations. I selected the one made ​​for Unesco , and another shown below

Tags: Architecture Old pictures Slide Arch Algeria Roman ruins North africa Triumphal arch Timgad Arch of Trajan

Voters: NDODS, RobertTurley, Kurt42 and 16 more


gss 6 1 Romania
17 Mar 2014 7:28AM
I want to thank you all for your beautiful thoughts and for all your comments
NDODS 10 5.2k 127 United Kingdom
17 Mar 2014 7:47AM
Both interesting and educational Silviu.

Regards Nathan GrinGrinGrin
17 Mar 2014 9:08AM
Great image, Silviu with a fascinating narrative.

ColleenA Plus
8 456 7 Australia
17 Mar 2014 11:16AM
More excellent information Silviu, love that Arch, a great piece of history....
Bantu 7 7 1 India
17 Mar 2014 12:33PM
Beautiful capture of heritage.

prabhusinha 12 5 5 India
17 Mar 2014 5:00PM
A historical town in ruins. Very saddening.
JuBarney Plus
9 33 5 United Kingdom
17 Mar 2014 5:39PM
A fine & interesting place and monument.
mistere Plus
7 6 4 England
17 Mar 2014 5:46PM
Love places like this, full of history and potographic opportunities.
This is a wonderful arch and must have been magnificent in its time.
Excellent history as well.
Sorry i missed this earlier Silviu, my internets had problems, on and off all day.

17 Mar 2014 6:12PM
One more wonderful image with informative writing, Silviu!
17 Mar 2014 9:51PM
Great shot Silviu and great write up. Cathy
18 Mar 2014 8:04PM

Quote:Great shot Silviu and great write up. Cathy

Just what I was going to say. Lovely.

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