Appian Way

On Wednesday we went to see the ancient Appian Way, now known as Appia Antica. This road, called the Queen of Roads, was one of the earliest and most strategic of the famous ancient Roman roads. It originally went to Capua, near modern Naples, but was soon taken all the way to Brindisum (modern Brindisi), which is in the heel of 'the boot.' Brindisum was a major port, basically it's where you went to sail to anywhere in the eastern Mediterranean.

Where the Appian Way left the city walls there was a large gate, then known (naturally) as the Appian Gate. It is now known as the San Sebastian gate. Inside the gate is a nice little museum about the walls of the city. I am fascinated by city walls, so of course I was all over this museum. You also get to walk on the walls for a bit, which was really cool.

Ancient Roman law forbid burial inside the city walls. This led to many (wealthy) Romans to construct tombs along the roads leaving the city. One of the best preserved is the Tomb of Caecilia Matella, pictured below.
Here's a nice picture of an ancient segment of the road with the original paving stones present. This was a nice walk, as we were basically out in the country, or very near it.
Another tomb along the road.
Another view of the road.


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