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History & Patrimony
Kenitra, the site of Thamusida
Ancient Sites of Morocco

Où dormir à Kénitra?

The site of Thamusida (Sidi Ali Ben Ahmed) is on the edge of Sebou, on its left bank, 10 km upstream of the town of Kenitra. The ruins of a surface of 15 hectares occupy of culminating eminences of 9 to 13 m.
The area of Sidi Ali Ben Ahmed, and probably the site itself, were occupied in the prehistoric times.
About the middle of the IInd century B.C, the platform which dominates the river in the northern part of the site carries a habitat characterized by architecture of mud and the presence of painted ceramic. The Mauritanian agglomeration continued to exist until the Roman conquest. Recent research carried out in Thamusida testifies to the existence of an occupation former to the IInd century
During the reign of Claude (41-54 A.C), strengthened structures multiply. Thamusida probably shelters an active port to which testify the many remains of Amphoras and becomes a point of unloading and a Roman supply centre.
Under the Flaviens (69-96 A.C), a Roman military garrison remains on the spot. The city gives signs of growth; a temple is raised (the Temple with embossing), as well as thermal baths and dwelling houses including one with a central court.
Under Trajan (97-117 A.C.) Or under Hadrian (117-138 A.C), a new structuring of urban space seems to take place by conferring to the city an orthogonal urbanism plan with thermal baths and a small temple dedicated to Venus-Astarte. The development and the enrichment of the city conveys in the continuing enlarging and transformation of the river thermal baths, in the construction of new temples bordering the bank of Sebou river and in new dwellings such as the House of pavement which adopts the plan of the rich residences of Volubilis and Spain. Modest houses, workshops and utility buildings occupy many districts. In addition to its commercial and industrial functions which are behind its development, the town of Thamusida was to play a significant military role. It was populated by veterans and under Marc-Aurele (161-180 A.C) was built the most imposing fortress of Tingitane so to ensure the protection of the civilian population. Under Commode (176-192 A.C) or the seventh Severe (193-211 A.C), an enclosure is built and which reemployed funerary steles and crushed a part of the pavement house, that indicates the fact that the work was dictated by the fear of a close or remote danger.
At the IIIrd century, the city is always active as shows the extent of the river thermal baths and the density of the ceramic founds is the spot until occurs the final abandonment which took place between 274 and 280 A.C, but it is not known if it is due to the departure of the army or to a posterior cause. Scattered finds and some walls of Thamusida attest of a ephemeral occupation posterior to the date of evacuation.

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