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Peter Bardwell | all galleries >> .. other Italian places >> Rome, and Lazio >> Sites, sights and museums >> Via Appia Antica & the Archeobus > Just a little history.....
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Just a little history.....

The Appian Way - to the ancient Romans, the via Appia and "Queen of long roads" - eventually
extended all the way from Rome as far as Brindisi, in Puglia... on the country's eastern,
Adriatic, coast.

The origin intent of the censor Appius Claudius - who, at the end of the C4th BC, took it upon
himself to order its construction across the lonely Pontine marshes and down to ancient Capua
(today's Santa Maria Capua Vetere) - was the conquest of Campania, for the easy and rapid movement
of troops and materiel to areas then held by the Samnites. It achieved its purpose, and still bears
his name.

Later it became one of the empire's principal transport routes, used for all manner of goods.

From the key port of Puteoli (now Pozzuoli) were brought both the almost magical pozzolana (chief
ingredient in the fast-setting, waterproof cement which allowed Rome its habours, aqueuducts and
the massive dome of the Pantheon) and - at times of year when sea conditions permitted - the stream
of grain, from Sicily and Roman territories in north Africa, that fed the majority of the capital's
huge population.

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