Dream Field Trip Part II

So the Romans, crafty militarists that they were, being at war with Carthage in Spain at the time and allied with Greece, moved in and encamped a garrison. They chose the high ground. Over time Rome incorporated Greece, this area became a Roman city, and the Greeks and Iberians below, Roman citizens or at least under Rome’s aegis. The Romans held a lofty view…

Looking back from the entrance to the Roman forum. The treetops are at the Greek city level.

Now, if we found it windy in the Greek city, up here among the Romans, it was brutal. Not even exaggerating. Take the city gate, for instance…

otherwise known as “The Wind Tunnel.”

To your left is the remains of the amphitheater; to your right, the arena. Through the the remains of the arched gate, the forum and city. Interestingly, on a stone to the right of the gate is a phallis carved in relief, we are told as a protection for the city. Obviously I am a woman, because that is not generally a symbol I regard as defensive. Anyway, to get here in this spot to take the photo, I was buffetted by the wind, but encountered no real difficulty. To return through this gate was a different story: a sandblaster of focused gales was whirling through here, and I found I had to turn my back and push backward through the gate. It was an actual feat of strength. Ridiculous! Or maybe I am just wimpy.

All roads lead to the forum, seemingly.

The whole archeological museum has wonderful signage, in four languages (one of which is cropped out here). It shows what the ruin looked like new, which is tremendously helpful when all you have are a bunch of footings.

Looking out over the forum. Big, eh?

The Roman house ruins were surrounded by, and surrounded, gardens, including this courtyard pond.

There were lots of marvels of engineering. The Roman bath houses were in the process of being excavated, including footings that raised the floor in the hot room, heating from the floor below. There were sewer systems, and fresh water systems. One I had never heard of before here was the Roman water purification system, used in the Greek and Roman sites. This photo is from the Greek city, but most of the houses boasted water collection from the tile roofs, which was then treated for use when water was scarce.

Amazingly, this apparently collected water from rain and rooftops and filtered it to make it potable water.

I am still in awe of such an old, old city…layers of oldness, even to the medieval convent that now houses the museum. Had I been a little girl, this would have delighted me as a playground. It makes me wonder if I wouldn’t have enjoyed a little archeology myself! But after all, it is MY dream field trip. I just hope my son/student benefited as well!





Filed under family, Teaching

2 responses to “Dream Field Trip Part II

  1. Jennifer

    I have to ask, did a funny thing happen on your way there? Sorry.

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