Ulpia Traiana Sarmizegetusa, the capital of Dacia, conquered by the Romans

by Victor Grigore, Webphoto.ro

The same impossible to pronounce name, Sarmizegetusa, is shared by two archeological sites, found some 40 km apart. The most spectacular one is found in the Orăștie Mountains, and was used by the free Dacians as last redoubt in front of the advancing legions of Emperor Trajan.
The archeological remains shown on this page are from a former garrison, turned into a colony after the conquest of Dacia by the Romans. Its complete name is Ulpia Traiana Augusta Dacica Sarmizegetusa. The remains are of interest for archeologists, as they include visible foundations of several typical Roman dwellings. There is a small amphitheater, which could still be used, garrisons, a forum, temples, Capitol and necropolis.
This archeological site is found in the named Sarmizegetusa in Hunedoara county. The village is on the national road between two medium cities, Hațeg (to the West) and Caransebeș (to the East). The city was visited by several Roman emperors, like Caracalla and Gordian III and was under constant attacks either from the free Dacians or from migrating tribes.
This colony was a strategic point on the road built by the Romans, connecting the Carpathians with the Danube, starting with the bridge of Apolodor of Damascus. The area has important tourist potential, yet to be exploited, as is near some important natural parks – Retezat, Valea Jiului, Poiana Mărului and even Herculane Spa. It survived the retreat of Aurelian at the end of the third century, but it further declined, until fading out in the middle ages.

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