Cultural Corridors of South East Europe

South East Europe / Diagonal Road

Roman Remains at Ilidza

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Roman Remains at Ilidza

About the site


Corridor: Diagonal Road
Country: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ilidza
Type: Ancient Site
Epoch: Antiquity
Theme: Antiquity
World Heritage:
AntiquityAntiquityAncient Site

The rate of settlement in Ilidza intensified during the Roman period thanks to the major road leading from Narona to the Sarajevo plain and on towards the Drina.
It may be deduced from information acquired by an analysis of Roman inscriptions that Ilidza had its own autonomous urban administration. It probably owed its existence to deliberate planning by the Roman authorities, namely Marcus Aurelius (161-180), who settled Roman veterans who had served out their period of military service in the Sarajevo plain in the second half of the 2nd century.
Archaeological excavations have shown that the settlement beside the thermal springs had already taken shape by the end of the 1st century. This is suggested by the Roman inscription Aquae S… (S… Baths). It underwent considerable development in the 2nd, 3rd and 4th centuries, and remained in existence until the 6th century. The thermal complex, the centre of the settlement, was built in the 2nd and 3rd centuries.
Part of the site consisting of a cluster of residential villas testifies to a highly developed residential culture. The walls of this buildings were decorated with frescoes, and the floors were covered in mosaics. A well-preserved mosaic was found in the remains of one of the villas. The central area of the mosaic shows the head of a woman representing the nymph of the thermal springs, with her symbols, fish and seahorses, in an elliptical medallion. The motifs, rich colour palette and accurate workmanship date the mosaic to the 1st century.

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