Thursday, June 18, 2015

Those Roman footprints at Hippos-Sussita

POPULAR ARCHAEOLOGY: I Stood Here for Rome. The clear imprints of the soles of Roman soldiers' footwear leave rare personal signatures at an ancient Roman enclave.
The archaeological sites of the ancient Roman Empire constitute without rival the most prolific array of ancient architecture and artifacts that can be attributed to any single civilization or culture. Its remains pockmark the Old World landscape from North Africa and Egypt to Hadrian’s Wall in Britain. The artifacts populate museums the world over.

But comparatively rarely does one find the preserved footprint of an ancient Roman citizen.

That is why excavators and archaeologists got excited when, while digging at the site of Hippos-Sussita (an ancient Hellenistic-Roman site just east of the Sea of Galilee in Israel), they came across what appeared to be imprints of the soles of Roman soldiers’ footwear within the remains of a Roman defensive bastion structure.

I noted this story back in 2007, but this piece has additional details about this find and about work at the site. It links to another, evidently more informative, Popular Archaeology article by the site's excavation director, but that one is behind the subscription wall.

There's lots more on Hippos-Sussita here and links.