From the Wikipedia entry for Volubilis:

Volubilis is a partly excavated Berber and Roman city situated near the city of Meknes, and commonly considered as the ancient capital of the kingdom of Mauretania. Built in a fertile agricultural area, it developed from the 3rd century BCE onward as a Berber, then proto-Carthaginian, settlement before being the capital of the kingdom of Mauretania. It grew rapidly under Roman rule from the 1st century CE onward and expanded to cover about 42 hectares (104 acres) with a 2.6 km (1.6 miles) circuit of walls. The city gained a number of major public buildings in the 2nd century, including a basilica, temple and triumphal arch, dating to 217 CE. Its prosperity, which was derived principally from olive growing, prompted the construction of many fine town-houses with large mosaic floors.

The city fell to local tribes around 285 and was never retaken by Rome because of its remoteness and indefensibility on the south-western border of the Roman Empire. It continued to be inhabited for at least another 700 years, first as a Latinised Christian community, then as an early Islamic settlement. In the late 8th century it became the seat of Idris ibn Abdallah, the founder of the Idrisid dynasty and the state of Morocco. By the 11th century Volubilis had been abandoned after the seat of power was relocated to Fez. Much of the local population was transferred to the new town of Moulay Idriss Zerhoun, about 5 km (3.1 miles) from Volubilis.

The ruins remained substantially intact until they were devastated by an earthquake in the mid-18th century and subsequently looted by Moroccan rulers seeking stone for building Meknes. It was not until the latter part of the 19th century that the site was definitively identified as that of the ancient city of Volubilis. During and after the period of French rule over Morocco, about half of the site was excavated, revealing many fine mosaics, and some of the more prominent public buildings and high-status houses were restored or reconstructed.

The Archaeological Site of Volubilis is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, listed for being "an exceptionally well preserved example of a large Roman colonial town on the fringes of the Empire".

Volubilis is another example of the many sites of Ancient Civilizations that I visited during my travels.

Here is a map of Volubilis:

Morocco Volubilis
Map © Prioryman

All pictures are © Dr. Günther Eichhorn, unless otherwise noted.


Approaching Volubilis
Approaching Volubilis. (767k)
View Over Volubilis
View over Volubilis. (939k)
View Over Volubilis
View over Volubilis. (773k)
Remains Aqueduct
Remains of the aqueduct. (855k)
View Along Decumanus Maximus
View along the Decumanus Maximus, the main road, towards the north-east. (792k)
View Along Decumanus Maximus
View along the Decumanus Maximus, the main road, towards the Triumphal Arch of Caracalla. (816k)
View Basilica Triumphal Arch
View of the Basilica and the Triumphal Arch of Caracalla from the House of the Columns. (687k)
View Basilica
View of the Basilica. (989k)
Exterior Basilica
Exterior of the Basilica. (709k)
Interior Basilica
Interior of the Basilica. (768k)
Capitoline Temple
Capitoline Temple. (751k)
View Basilica Capitoline Temple
View of the Basilica from the Capitoline Temple. (671k)
Basilica Left Capitoline Temple
Basilica (left) and Capitoline Temple (far right). (786k)
Forum. (762k)
Triumphal Arch Caracalla Left
Triumphal Arch of Caracalla (left) and House of Columns (right). (723k)
Triumphal Arch Caracalla
Triumphal Arch of Caracalla. (636k)
Building Volubilis
Building in Volubilis. (859k)
Buildings Volubilis
Buildings in Volubilis. (684k)
Pool Buildings
Pool in one of the buildings. (900k)
Public Bath
Public bath. (800k)
Columns Corinthian Column Capitals
Columns with Corinthian column capitals. (772k)
Huge Floor Mosaic Wildlife
Huge floor mosaic with wildlife scenes. (1139k)
Closer View Animals
Closer view of some of the animals. (1168k)
Closer View Animals
Closer view of some of the animals. (1306k)
Floor Mosaic Mythical Creatures
Floor mosaic with mythical creatures. (1143k)
Floor Mosaic House Acrobat
Floor mosaic in the House of the Acrobat. It is called that because of the parody of a horseman riding a donkey backwards. (987k)
Close-up Floor Mosaic House
Close-up of the floor mosaic in the House of the Acrobat. (893k)
Floor Mosaic Showing Fish
Floor mosaic showing fish and fishermen. (1008k)
Large Floor Mosaic Dolphins
Large floor mosaic with dolphins. (998k)
Closer View Dolphins
Closer view of the dolphins. (1082k)
Floor Mosaic
Floor mosaic. (1023k)
Detail Floor Mosaic
Detail of the floor mosaic. (920k)
Floor Mosaic Geometric Designs
Floor mosaic with geometric designs. (940k)
Ionic Column Capital
Ionic column capital. (808k)
Corinthian Column Capital
Corinthian column capital. (730k)
Statue. (427k)
Inscription. (930k)
Inscription. (826k)
Restored Olive Oil Press
Restored olive oil press. (647k)


We just drove through Meknes, I only saw the Bab el-Mansour gate to the Meknes medina.

The Historic City of Meknes is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Bab El-mansour Gate
Bab el-Mansour gate. (783k)

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Page last updated on Tue Sep 24 18:19:03 2019 (Mountain Standard Time)

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