The Frontinus Street

The Frontinus Street
The Frontinus Street was the principal avenue (plateia) of the city, conceived as a part of a unitary project together with the gate in the 1st century AD. It is paved and in its center runs the main drain, covered with large stone blocks. Along the sides are a number of buildings, including houses, shops and warehouses, unified by a travertine facade that was 170 meters long. A series of buildings of late date (5th - 6th century A.D.) invades the road surface, in this period reduced to no more than 8 meters wide. A thick calcareous deposit (about 2 meters thick), formed through the runoff of spring water, covered the road surface. Use of pneumatic compressors, which broke the calcareous formations into fragments, was the only way that the street could be brought to light.

Hierapolis of Phrygia, a thriving city known for its medicinal spas founded in 190 BC by Eumenes II, king of Pergamum. It prospered under the Romans, more under the Byzantines when it gained a large Jewish community. Earthquakes brought disaster to the city and it was abandoned in 1334. The remains of the marvellous colonnaded Frontinus Street at Hierapolis, with some of its paving and columns still intact. The Street was once the ancient city's main north-south commercial axis and was bounded at both ends by monumental archways which still feature in the ruins near the village of Pamukkale.

It is worth admiring the well preserved structure with three openings, in carefully squared travertine blocks, with elegant arches decorated with a simple cornice moulding, flanked by two round towers that recall Hellenistic city Gates. The Arch of Domitian at the end of the main north-south thoroughfare at Hierapolis, Turkey.

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