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July 2003-July 2010InteractiveDig Sagalassos
Roman Baths
Plan of Roman Baths

Photos courtesy Sagalassos Archaeological Research Project. Click on images to enlarge.
by Marc Waelkens

Roman Baths: Aims 2008

We have excavated the Roman Baths at Sagalassos since 1995, thanks to a generous grant made by the family L. Lamberts-Van Assche. The complex was built on a natural hill east of the Lower Agora, during a general reorganization of the Lower Agora and its surroundings. Early in the second century A.D., most probably during the reign of Hadrian (117-138), the hilltop was levelled and all previous constructions were dismantled. At the same time, its surface was enlarged considerably by the construction of a substantial artificial terrace, composed of at least five large vaulted rooms of ca. 100 m each. On the upper floor, we have identified three caldaria, two tepidaria, and two frigidaria so far.

During the campaign of 2007 the head, leg and foot of a colossal statue of Hadrian were found in frigidarium 1, and caught the attention of the international press.

During the 2008 campaign, priority will be given to the further excavation of the southern and eastern areas of the upper floor of the bath complex:

  1. In 2007, a stratigraphical balk was left in the South, on the eastern side of tepidarium II. This will be removed with the aim of completing the excavation of the space.

  2. A new space was discovered in 2007, south of tepidarium II and west of frigidarium I, which functioned as the praefurnium of tepidarium II in Late Antiquity. The excavation of this space needs to be completed, its relative chronology established as well as linked to the general building history of the Baths.

  3. To check the stability of the current south wall of the Baths, and provide further chronological clues as to its multiple building phases, we intend to excavate a substantial portion of the fill that accumulated south or outside of the south wall of the Baths, over the full length of the building.

The excavations will also proceed in the southern and eastern parts of frigidarium I, along the eastern edge of the Baths. The outside of the east wall of the Baths, should be excavated too, as far north as the excavations in frigidarium 1 progress.

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