Hauarra: A Trajanic Auxiliary Fort on the Arabian Frontier in Jordan (at Mary Winspear Centre)


Course description

For more than twenty-five years, John Oleson directed survey and excavation at Humayma, the site of ancient Hauarra, in Jordan’s spectacular southern desert, not far from Petra. The settlement was founded by the Nabataean king Aretas in the first century B.C., flourished during the Roman and Byzantine empires, and was the site of the Abbasid revolt against the Umayyad Caliphate in the mid-eighth century. For centuries Hauarra was an important caravan centre on the Nabataean and Roman road system. The Roman fort at Hauarra was founded as an administrative and military center soon after the conquest of the Nabataean kingdom by Trajan in AD 106 and his establishment of the Provincia Arabia.

Preparation of the final report concerning the fort has lead to new conclusions about its design, construction, layout, history, and function, and its relation to other military architecture in the region. The fort and its interior structures provide one of the clearest known examples of modular planning in Roman military architecture. This talk will present these new results in the context of the Roman occupation of the Near East.

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