Numantia, at Garray, Soria.
Planta de la ciudad
Plan of the city.

Researchs in Roman Celtiberian city of Numantia are outstanding because of historical reasons rather than architectural achievements: it was a good sample of resistance against Romans. Rome set in military castra for siege the greatest army in its history. It took the chief role in the most important moment of Celtiberian city, since, after Numantia was taken at 133 b.C., Celtiberian wars ended and Celtiberia was officially included in Roman territorial province of Hispania.
Vista aerea de Numancia
Aerial view of Numantia.
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History tells us that Numantines gave shelter to Segedenses -people from Segeda: nowadays Mara, in Zaragoza- who were enemies of Rome. Romans were finally beaten and decided taking their revenge on Celtiberians as an example for the whole Hispania. After a resistance of 20 years in wich several Roman Generals were humiliated, Rome sent Publius Cornelius Scipio "the African" at year 134 b.C. Scipio keep the siege of the city for 11 months until it was defeated. This resistance against Roman world became so famous that Celtiberian wars (153-133 a.C.) were later known as "Numantine wars".
Campamentos romanos
Roman castra.
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In this area two kinds of archaeological remainings can be distinguished. They belong to both superimposed cities: Celtiberian and Roman one.
  • Parts of native constructions of the Celtiberian castra built on this hill did survive in our days. After being conquered by Rome, because of the pitiful situation of the castra, it suffered an important urban restoration. The city kept its basic structure, even urban services, but all the houses were rebuilt following Roman systems.
    Splendid reconstructions of an Arevaquian -Celtiberian- house and of parts of the wall have been succesfully made:
    • Celtiberian house: it has a rectangular plan and is divided into three rooms. The first one, close to the entry, was devoted to work: a mill for cereal, work of leather, textile industry... It was also endowed with a little basement comunicated through a little staircase and used as a cellar for "Caelia" or wheat beer. The second one is the main chamber: a living room with a fireplace. The third one is the larder, communicated with a little patio with a shelter for animals. Exterior façade shows a stone plinth. The wall is made of adobe with a wooden structure up to the floor. It is built with wood and rye straw.
Casa celtíbera de Numancia
Celtiberian house of Numantia.
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Muralla de Numancia
Wall of Numantia.
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Casa celtíbera de Numancia
Celtiberian house of Numantia.
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    • The wall, has a single structure. It is composed by two thin stone walls full with rubbish. At its top, an exterior adobe protective wall reinforced with wood, that let room enough for a small watching parade. One of the entry doors in a recent rebuilt shows two towers with a broken access in order to make difficult a direct entry.
Puerta con torres de la Muralla de Numancia Puerta con torres de la Muralla de Numancia
Puerta con torres de la Muralla de Numancia
Door with towers in a Numantine wall. Press images to enlarge.
  • Roman city. As it has been already said, Roman city was built on the basements of the Celtiberian one. Its urban design was kept, since it showed a composition of crossed streets with a direction east-west in order to relieve the strong cool North wind. Services, streets, drainages and cisterns were improved. Many termae and new plan houses were also built.
    Vistas generales de las exacavaciones Vistas generales de las exacavaciones
    General view of researchings. Press images to enlarge.

    Following remainings are outstanding:
    Calle con pasaderas
    Street with stepping stones.
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    • Cisterns with and without stairs, in order to store water taken from a river or from rain.
    • Streets with pavements and stepping stones. There were never gutters, so the way for rejecting water was throwing it directly to the streets. A slight slope made evacuating dirty waters. That is why stepping stones let people cross steets without problems.
    • A very good rebuilt of a basic Roman house, elevated on the plan of an old arevacan construction. Exterior work is made of stone on a wooden structure. Cover is made with rye straw, similar to the old Celtiberian house. Access was done through a patio with a well and a furnace to a working room (mill and textile industry) and, then, to a kitchen. Now there are rooms for rest. At the end there is a store: a granary with a direct access to a farmyard and a stable.
    • Porticated houses are placed at the southern side of the hill, getting so shelter from wind. These are the most important buildings in the Roman city. They had a plan with a shape of L, a porticated patio and two floors joined by a stone staircase.
    • There are only drainages and basements -for the columns of a big porticated patio that would have been surrounded by several rooms- from a public building.
    • It also remains a part of a caldarium -outlet for warm water- with its bath from small termae.
      Reconstrucción de una casa romana Casas porticadas
      Casas porticadas
      Reconstruction of a Roman housePorticated houses. Press images to enlarge.