Monday 5 September 2011

Ready for Gladiator School?
Viennese Escapes: Carnuntum

A Window to Austria's Roman Past.
Detail of the reconstructed House of Lucius,
named after an inscription - Lucius Maticeius Clemens -
found during earlier archaeological excavations
at the Archaeological Park of Carnuntum

All Lined Up
Imagine all those little Roman pupils
sitting here on their first day back to school!
Well, that certainly was not the case here
in Lucius' home, after all, archaeologists
are quite certain that he was a farmer.
Recently, Carnuntum made international headlines
because of the sensational discovery and
excavation of what is billed
as the largest Roman Gladiator School.

Roman Public Baths
The central assembly room,
the basilica thermarum, was the largest hall,

but bathing took place in the
frigidarium, the tepidarium and the caldarium,
each of which had different temperatures.

Villa Urbana
The reconstructed spacious villa
of a member of the Carnuntum upper class.
Even though they lived far removed
from the capital of the Roman Empire,
the Roman citizens of Carnuntum would not give up
the comfort and high standards
of living enjoyed back home.

All Roads lead to Rome
True, back when all the empire's roads radiated
out from the capital city, but nowadays
this stretch of original Roman road leads
to a .... coffee house and restaurant!
If I were a Roman food critique, I would
give their Viennese Melange 4½ amphorae out of 5.

Leaving no Stone Unturned
Archeologists and other research scientists'
hard work has unearthed ancient splendours:
Just imagine: 1700 years ago,
an estimated 50,000 Roman citizens
lived within Carnuntum's 10 squ. kilometres
in a standard of living that would not be achieved again
for more than a thousand years
after the fall of the Roman empire.

Carnuntum Archaeological Park
is located in Lower Austria,
45 km east of Vienna, on the Danube river,
and well worth a side trip.
Click on the label below for
more images of Carnuntum.

Coming up next:
A look at food,
prepared the Old Roman Way!

Are you hungry yet?

Images and Text
© by Merisi


  1. That villa looks really interesting.

  2. Lorenzothellama:
    It really is, Jill!
    I'll take you there on your next visit to Vienna.

  3. that is so cool. The romans had a lot in common with us. Gladiator schools? We now call 'em football camps.

  4. Charles Gramlich:

  5. Gosh not what one expects?
    Can you find a glass with a spoon perched on top there?
    Is this truly Vienna?
    I'm lost without the spoon/glass combo

  6. That is fascinating. I read about the Roman gladiator school on Yahoo just last week. Now there's even more of an excuse to visit Vienna again.

  7. Carol @ Paris Breakfasts:
    - Glass with spoon: check!
    - Is it Vienna: 45 km east
    - You lost: Darling, never, you'd smell the coffee! :-)

    Carnuntum really is worth a visit!

  8. We saw similar reconstructions in England -- those Romans knew a thing or two about comfort.

  9. Romans were really interesting people, they had great culture.
    Very nice photo series! I am waiting for your next post! :)

  10. Vicky Lane,
    they knew, indeed! And not only that, remember Lucullus? (Not that I'll ever understand why - beside the word lucullan - we found nothing better than name Swiss chard after him. Revenge by those who lust after the sort of meal he enjoyed even when only in his own company?).

    Mr. Paparazzo,
    thank you! Roman food will come up as soon as I find the time to work through my files.

  11. How interesting because I didn't know there were gladiators in Vienna.

  12. Gladiator school? Um... yes, please! Bring on the gladiators! (Just got through watching the "Spartacus" series... am still a bit excitable.)


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