ANCIENT AGE MONUMENTS
The Via Appia bordered on the North side of the Emilian Forum; the stone paving and the ancient side-walk of the road are completely well preserved; there is a limestone ditch for the drainage underneath this sidewalk. Besides, a series of small pillar, whose bases are the only remains, divided the road from the area of the Forum.
We do not know the guardian deity of this temple which became part of the Cathedral during the middle Ages. It preserves the high podium, built opus quadratum, having the favissae which have been changed into shop as well as a portion of the extrernal walls of the cella; these walls have particular features thanks to the former marble slabsused for itscovering, its fluted hall-columns and a carved frieze with a scroll-shaped form.
According to some scholars, the building (it dates back about 50 B.C.) should be identified whit the temple dedicated to the capitoline triad (Jupiter, Juno and Minerva). Originally it was decorated along its front side with four columns of Tuscan-Doric style; it had three cellas of tufa and limestone reticulate only partially remained, under which are visible the so called favissae that is the rooms where the votive donations were kept.
It was identified only recently; its only remains are some reticolate walls of the cella and a marble fluted column which now is part of the modern building facing the Salita dell’Annunziata; the remains of another column have been found in a cellar. It may be the temple was a hexastile one and it had some niches in the inside walls.
The remains of a portico with a floor and some marble columns, which could be reached from the Via Appia through three steps, came to light in 1943-44 during the bombing. A Roman theatre has been located on its back; today the theatre, whose entrance (aditus) on the east side is visible, is interred. New excavations, started a shot time ago, are giving good results.
The Palazzo della Bonificazione (that is the offices of the work of reclamation), belonging to the 18th century, was built on the remains of the Roman Basilica and is located on the eastern side of the ancient Forum. Its structures, one can see going up the Salita dell’Annunziata, have been identified thanks to a drawing by Baldassarre Peruzzi ; in the 16th century he saw the ruins of a rectangular building surrounded by a portico.
It was the monumental entrance to the Forum from the East side. The medieval structures,which had been built all around it, fell down during the bombing of the town in 1943 and so the arch came out in its original form. Originally it had four large archways layingon a square base overhanging the Via Appia whose paving blocks on still visible. A similar arch was situated on the west side of the Forum; later the medieval Palazzo Vinditti look its place.
The new walls were built above the Vosco-Roman circuit at the beginning of the 5th century A.D. and were provided whit square towers, most of them are in good condition. A long stretch of the watch walk is also almost intact; this part became an open road in 1786 when Pope Pius VI converted the fortifications into houses.
The stretch of walls of polygonal stonework, which one can see underneath Via Posterula, may be attributed to the Roman colony of 329 B.C.; on the contrary the costruction of small stone blocks and bricks built on it is part of the circuit walls made in the 5th century A.D. Other stretches of the walls belonging to the Republican period can be admired in the North side of the town and on the hill of S. Francesco.
This is the name of the monumental door situated on the North-West of the town; it was built at the end of the 18th century under Pope Pius VI. On the west side, the door leans against a ancient tower consisting of a base of polygonal stonework and surmounted by a wall,built opus incertum, belonging to the beginning of the 1st century B.C., is on it; the wall has four ancient arched windows which have been walled up.
This costruction, built opus incertum, goes back perhaps to the first decades of the 1st century B.C. Its front facing has five large archways lying on pilasters; these archways have been walledup and they have not the same height owing to the sloping road. An arched-window can be seen on the west corner and it is reinforced by huge rectangular blocks.
It is made up of a great wall of polygonal ashlar stonework containing stone blocks laid in such a way to compose almost horizontal rows. It supported the sloping paving of the ancient Via Appia, which is still well kept beneath the asphait surface of Corso A. Garibaldi.
The square of the forum is supported on the west side by imposing vaulted arcades; on leaning against t he mountain precipice they have given origin to an artificial terrace. They are arranged in such a way to form four parallel corridors which today belong to different private owners. However, one can see the remains of one of the entrance arches in Piazza Tasso.
An imposing base made of large ashlar blocks is visible inside Parco della Rimembranza; it is part of a costruction whose identification is unknown. It is considered a temple dedicated to Minerva according to a groundless tradition. From the park one can also see a rempart of polygonal stonework that surrounds the ancient acropolis, which today is called the hill of S. Francesco.
The section of the urban walls laying on the east and south side of Piazza S. Domitilla, built as a second-style polygonal masonry, belongs to the original city wall and it probably dates back to the V century B.C.. The superelevation of the east and the extension of the south sections along with the three quadrangular towers, all built in opus listatum style, were developed in the first decades of the V century A.D..
Its name comes from Porta Maior (Major) and it marked the most important entrance to the ancient town coming from Rome. The door was demolished at the end of the 18th century; the two imposing towers on both sides can still be admired with its front walls diverging to the outside for defence reasons.
The door closed the ancient town on the South-West and it was demolished in 1831. Today we can admire just the left tower which was part of the tower was used as a house. Two funeral lions show the localization of the door, they belong to the Roman period and were placed in front of it during the middle Ages.
where history overlooks the sea
Progetto Rete d'Imprese "Terracina Alta"
Centro Storico Terracina
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