Sightseeing Merida

Roman Monuments


Merida, capital of the autonomous community of Extremadura, is also tourist reference worldwide because of its important archaeological and monumental, for which he was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1993.
It has a large number of monuments and structures of great importance to keep alive the history occurred in the city many centuries ago. However, this contrasts with living history today and modernity of the new times, embodied in new buildings, modern and functional, which have made the city a benchmark for congress city and services.

Roman Theatre of Mérida

Technical Characterist: The building corresponds to the typical Roman model.
It is mainly composed by:
-Stands and orchestra

History: It was constructed in the years 16 to 15 BCE. The theater has undergone several renovations, notably at the end pf the 1st century or early 2nd century CE, when the current facade of the scenae frons was erected, and another in the time of Constantine I.

Use: It was slowly covered with earth, with only the upper tiers of seats (summa cavea) remaining visible. In local folklore the site was referred to as "The Seven Chairs", where, according to tradition, several Moorish kings sat to decide the fate of the city.

Arch of Trajan

Not is a triumphal arch, and was dedicated to the world-famous Hispanic emperor. It was the monumental gateway to the sacred space (temenos) circling a giant temple of the imperial cult. The entire assembly was surrounded by a portico. This temple, in turn, was encompassed in the whole provincial forum, where we are aware of the existence of another temple dedicated to the Concordia de Augusto, some of whose pieces are part of the obelisk dedicated to the Martyr.

The arch, which retains a height of 15 meters from the start of the batteries, was the central opening of a door with three arches, with the two smaller sides and sale. The entire structure was made of granite blocks.

Today we see it stripped of all its marble cladding plates and inscriptions that surely wore. Only moldings remaining battery startups. It concluded the axis segmented the city from south to north, the maximum kardo, which we can see some slabs, and in it the paving of the public square the forum began. As a curiosity, we can still see on the floor the hinges of the doors that closed this monumental door. Immersed in modern constructive tangle and masked by the neighboring houses, this arch stands majestic and admired by travelers and historians of all time.

Roman Amphiteatre

The construction of the amphitheater was planned along with the theater and rose shortly thereafter. As is clear from the inscriptions found inside, was inaugurated in the year 8 b.C. With this work the project to equip the colony Augusta Emerita, and then capital of the province Lusitania, a large public area for shows, commensurate with its political and administrative category was completed.After its abandonment, linked to the formalization of Christianity in the IV a.C., part of its structure was hiding underground, which was discovered, especially the summa cavea, he served as a quarry of materials for other works. Since the XVI century some authors called the naumaqui building in the mistaken belief that it was the venue for mock sea battles, for which were based on the depth of the central pit and the proximity of some sections of aqueduct. Excavations from 1919 correct the error and brought back to its true identity.
USE: This building was intended for gladiatorial combats between beasts or men and beasts, the so called venatio, which together with the races in the circus were preferred by the Roman people.
TECHNICAL CHARACTERIST: The amphitheater has an elliptical shape with a major axis of 126m and a minor one of 102m, while the arena is 64m by 41m. Cáveas the stands or from the east side were built on the hill of San Albín, like the adjacent theater. Sixteen dorrs open to the outside on the facade, the main one of which is located on the western end of the shaft.
Two of the doors at the northeast are closed by the wall and there is no unanimous view of why it. Its steps are divided into three sectors: ima, media and summa cavea. Two long galleries at the ends of the major axis allow further access to the stands, the entry of the gladiators to the arena.

The house of Mithreus

The domus , every room except theatrium , in common usage, was intended for a specific use:cubiculum (bedroom),cenaculum (dining room), tablinum (office of pater familias ). At the gateway to theatrium was a smallvestibulum ; the atrium, outdoor space, was the central courtyard of the domus , and its top opening came rainwater ( compluvium ), falling in a small central basin ( impluvium ), connected to an underground cistern. In one corner of the court there was the larario , niche for domestic worship. Around the courtyard there were some small rooms and aligned with the axis of the entrance, a large room ( tablinum ) that the owner used as a courtroom and meetings with people outside the family. This room communicated with the peristyle , a second very large internal courtyard. The arcaded peristyle was adorned with all kinds of plants, flowers, statues and fountains. All around better lit and beautiful rooms of the house (bedrooms, living rooms), of which the most important was the were structured couch, room in which the Romans dined, lying on a slightly sloping couches and leaning on cushions.

Known as Mitreo house are the remains of a domus , in the same location as possible Mithraic sanctuary. Arranged around three patios, family rooms, commercial premises, gardens, hot springs are preserved. These dependencies are murals and mosaics, most notably the so-called 'Cosmological Mosaic', one of the most interesting and attractive of the peninsula, which is a description of the world with the phenomena of nature personified.

The Roman Bridge

The roman bridge of the Spanish city of Merida (Extremadura) is considered to be the longest of the old.1 In the times of the Roman Empire the work stood on the River Guadiana along 62 arches with a total length of 755 m. Today the bridge has a length of 721 m and rests on 60 arches, of which 3 are hidden on the shores.

The bridge is part of the archaeological site of Merida, one of the main and most extensive archaeological sites of Spain, which was declared a World Heritage Site in 1993 by Unesco.

Since the foundation of the Colonia Augusta Emerita at 25 b. C. The town was formed as the most important center of the communications network in the west of the Iberian peninsula, both by its range of capital of the province of Lusitania as by the ease of crossing the river Guadiana that gave its enormous stone bridge. Thus, the important road the Silver route that crossed Hispania from north to south by the west and the roads that were directed to Olissipo (Lisbon), Corduba, Toletum or Caesaraugusta (Zaragoza) were in Merida and had to cross the bridge. The bridge was lifted at the same time that was founded the city in the last decades of the century bc of the work I preserves the original arcades of the beginning and the end of the bridge, as the rest of your extension has been rebuilt several times because of the damage incurred by the armed conflicts and large floods of the river. The first intervention that has news was carried out in the Visigothic era (between centuries V and VIII a. C.). Its current state was fixed by a restore practiced in the nineteenth century. The original roman bridge had two tranches of arches separated who joined together with a huge tajamar that extended upstream to curb the strength of the current. This tajamar was destroyed by a great flood and was replaced in the seventeenth century by five new arches that gave unit to around the bridge. On the remains of this tajamar was built a descending ramp that still today is in use. In that same century created a second descendedero, called San Antonio by the chapel dedicated to the saint that exists to its output. In this important reconstruction of the modern age ashlars were used extracted from the roman theater of the city. The bridge is currently 792 m and has a height of 12 m above the average level of the water. It is built with a core of opus caementicium, the Roman concrete, coated with padded ashlars characteristic of the architecture America. Consists of sixty arches and various spillways in areas where the river runs with more force. Also, the original pillars have small cutwaters rounded upstream to alleviate the thrust of the current. The bridge endured the passage of traffic throughout its history, but became exclusively pedestrian on 10 December 1991, the day on which it was inaugurated the bridge Lusitania.