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[an error occurred while processing this directive]Archaeological Site of Volubilis, Morocco

[an error occurred while processing this directive][an error occurred while processing this directive] Archaeological Site of Volubilis is an ancient Roman outpost that once served as the capital of Mauritania in the 3rd century BC. It is located near the city of Meknes, between Fez and Rabat.

Volubilis is believed to have been established by the Carthaginians as early as the 3rd century BC, or probably even earlier. That was when the Romans took over the settlement from the Carthaginians.


Ancient Roman remains in Volubilis, Morocco
Ancient Roman remains in Volubilis, Morocco
photo sourcehttp://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Ancient_Roman_remains_in_Volubilis_in_Morocco.jpg
authorshipHigh Contrast (Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Germany)


Volubilis became one of the westernmost outposts of the Roman Empire. It was occupied until at least the 3rd century AD, when the Romans began their withdrawal from the region. But unlike other Roman cities, the Romans did not institute a complete pull-out here. Volubilis continued to be inhabited into the late fourth century and even the sixth century, and the discovery of tombstones with Latin on them pointed to the existence of a Roman community here.

By the 7th century, however, rule over Volubilis must have shifted to the Berbers, as evident by the discovery of coins with Berber writings on them. According to historic chronicles, the city was then ruled by Idris I in Ad 788 until his death in 791. Volubilis was inhabited for another thousand years, only to be abandoned in the 18th century. The city was deliberately demolished on the order of Moulay Ismail, in order for him to pilfer building materials for his palaces in Meknes. This may also have happened following the 1755 Lisbon earthquake, which damaged many of the structures in Volubilis.


Basilica of Volubilis
Basilica of Volubilis
photo sourcehttp://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Volubilis-basilica.jpg
authorshipJerzy Strzelecki
photo licensing


Archaeological Site of Volubilis was inscribed as a World Heritage Site during the 21st session of the World Heritage Committee in Naples, Italy, 1 - 6 December, 1997.

World Heritage Site Inscription Details

Location: N34 4 26.004 W5 33 24.984 in the province of Meknès el Menzeh Meulay-Idriss Zerhoun, in Wilaya de Meknès, Morocco.
Inscription Year: 1997
Type of Site: Cultural
Inscription Criteria: II, III, IV, VI

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