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Utique

Utica is one of the first Phoenician cities of North Africa. It was founded according to Pliny the Elder, Pseudo-Aristotle and Velleius Paterculus in 1101 BC, nine years after Cadiz.
Archaeological evidence of Utica in contradiction with the ancient sources do not go back beyond the end of the eighth and beginning of the seventh century BC AD, as evidenced by the Phoenician funerary tombs. The foundation of Utica is part of the business of the Phoenicians of Tyre who were excellent sailors and founders of cities remains the most famous Carthage.
First capital of the Phoenician presence in North Africa, Utica remained independent even after the founding of Carthage in 814 BC. Only after AD 480 BC, when the defeat of the Carthaginians at Himera in Sicily, Carthage, under its new policy of colonization of the hinterland, will submit Utica. Despite this dependence, Utica retained some autonomy.
Utica remained an ally of Carthage during the First and Second Punic Wars Roman-episodes which are respectively 264-241 and 218-202 BC BC It is only occasionally of the Third War (149-146 BC.) qu'Utique abandoned the Punic city. As a reward, Rome granted him the status of free city and turned it into capital of the new Roman province of Africa.
From 49 BC. BC, Utica will take part in "civil war" that pitted supporters of Caesar and Pompey. Cato, a staunch ally of the Pompeian party objected twice to the massacre of the people uticéen who was in the main supporter of Caesar. Refusing to give to Caesar after the defeat of the Pompeians at Thapsus in 46 BC. BC, Cato committed suicide.
Romanization of Utica has quickly resulted in the reign of Octavian status municipality in 36 BC. AD, Hadrian (117-138) granted him the status of colony. With Septimius Severus (193-211), it will find its peak and was able to grant themselves the right to the example of Latin Carthage and Leptis Magna.
The reconstruction of Carthage "Colonia Iulia Karthago" under Octave in 29 BC had a detrimental effect on Utica who ceased to be the capital of the Roman province of Africa. Carthage now regained its role as capital to keep it for long.
The penetration of Christianity is attested to Utica from the middle of III century From V s, the historical and archaeological Utica becoming rarer and Vandal and Byzantine eras have left many traces.


Maison de l'insula II


L'écurie et ses mangeoires
(Maison de la Cascade)

The remains of Punic and Phoenician times:
Few vestiges of that era. Three cemeteries are marked at Utica, the first date northeast of VII-V BC. BC, the second north-west was used for V-IV BC. AD, the third, most recently, south-west, back to the II-III BC. AD
The Punic vestiges household are not numerous, walls built of mud bricks and harps are based on a foundation of rubble, the ground is covered with pavement; Punic type tanks are narrow, elongated, with rounded ends, the is sealed by a plastic coating deposited on the walls.
The remains of Roman times:

Most public buildings are in poor condition, date from the second century ap. BC, the most important ones are represented by:
Forum novum: it is a great place (110/54 m) covered with marble slabs of which there are only Proconnesus footprint, it was built in the II s ap. AD to replace the old forum (Forum Vetus of smaller dimensions), which should date from the Ie BC. AD
Temple located in front of the old Forum, north-east to the headland, it dates from the Republican era and was built in I s BC, this is probably the temple dedicated to Jupiter , mentioned by Plutarch.
The Amphitheatre: only a part is discovered, the other part remains buried under modern buildings. It is located in the southwest and go up in the second s ap. J. - C.
Waterworks: order to supply mainly the Great Spa and the many tanks, the Emperor Hadrian (117-138 AD. AD) built the aqueduct, part of which is currently visible in the southwest of the site
Great Spa: Located in the northwest on the edge of the swamp, the Great Baths date from the second s ap. AD
Le Cirque: Reduced to a single elongated depression, the circus, which dates from the same period is marked in the southwest of the site.
The remains of Roman domestic architecture

The wealth of Roman domestic architecture is well documented in Utica, as evidenced by the three insulae were identified so far, they demonstrate the wide variety of mosaic pavements of the houses that have experienced great splendor. It is no coincidence that an entry describes the site of Dougga of splendissima of Utica. The insulae I, II and III are located in the habitat area northeast of the site, they were occupied for a long period beginning with the Ie s ap. BC and lasted until the sixth AD. The insulae BC II is the largest and most comprehensive, it measures 86 m 80 / 39 M.57, 12 lots divided into two groups occupy the space of six homes which brought together the richest among which located in the Cascade House, the House of historiated capitals, the House of House Hunting and the Treasury.

The Antiquarium of Utica

In addition to the garden in which are exposed significant architectural elements of Punic and Roman mosaic floors and two rooms are the Antiquarium of Utica. The first room devoted to antique Phoenician and Punic houses the finds unearthed necropolis off by the old and new excavations, there is a large collection of ceramics from Phoenicia, Greece, the ornaments of Egyptian type and Egyptianizing (amulets, scarabs, rings), urns, grave markers and a group of lamps of different types.
In the second room are exhibited objects from the Roman period, they are essentially the mosaic floors, a concise collection of Latin inscriptions. The sculpture is beautifully represented by masterpieces (sleeping Ariadne Hercules, Aesculapius, Satyr). This collection is complemented by a set of ceramic and terracotta features of different times of the Roman presence experienced by Uticéens.


Mosaic: "Love fisherman on a boat", late second-early third s.ap.J.-C. (House of
Cascade Utica).

Mosaïquede hunting, the first half of the fourth s.ap.J.-C (antiquarium of Utica)


Mosaïque: "Amour pêcheur sur une barque", fin du IIe-début du IIIe s.ap.J.-C. ( Maison de la
Cascade Utique).

Mosaïquede la chasse, 1ère moitié du IVe s.ap.J.-C (antiquarium d'Utique)


Last Updated on Wednesday, 15 December 2010 13:32