Castrum Novum in Santa Marinella

Castrum Novum was a Roman old maritime colony on the territory of what is now Santa Marinella. The structure was built to protect the northern coast of the territory.

Castrum Novum Santa Marinella

Useful information

Address: SS1 (Via Aurelia), KM. 64 – Santa Marinella. Phone: +39 06 39967999. Opening times: From 10:00 till 12:00 and from 17:00 till 19:00, closed on Saturdays and Sundays. Ticket price: Not known.

History and description

Castrum Novum in Santa Marinella
Castrum Novum

The Roman colony of Castrum Novum was founded in 264 BC. The aim was to defend the northern coast of the territory.

Since it has been referred to in inscriptions as Colonia Iulia Castronova, it has been thought that the colony might have been repopulated under Caesar.

The 12 hectare fortress had a rectangular plan and was surrounded by walls.

Documented presence of notables, including city magistrates, district administrators and members of the Senate, as well as Augustales (priests in charge of Imperial worship), testify to the erstwhile importance of the colony.

18th century excavations brought to light several structures dating back to the Imperial age. These include houses, a road with some sepulchers, a theater, an aqueduct and an altar dedicated to Apollo.

Along the coast, pavements, opus reticulatum (rectangular protective tuff stone tiles covering walls) structures and sewers have been discovered.

Architectural finds include a casket with 122 gold coins (1st and 2nd century AD), statues of various emperors, a statue of Bacchus and a herm depicting Aspasia.

From older finds, it is clear that there were already people living in this site during the Etruscan period and even the Iron Age (9th century BC).

Castrum Novum, Santa Marinella

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