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The present-day city is situated on the site of an ancient Roman military post and has a history dating back to the 10th century. The town is French in character, with a rectangular city plan, red tile-roofed buildings, and beautiful public gardens. The hills surrounding Médéa are covered with vineyards, orchards, and farms that yield abundant grain. Médéa’s chief products are wines, irrigation equipment, and various handicrafts.
Médéa could be the ancient Roman post "Medix" or "ad Médias", so called because it was equidistant from Tirinadi (Berrouaghia) and Sufnsar (Amoura).
Médéa was the capital of Titteri; a Bey, deputy of the Dey of Algiers, was resident there. The beylik of Titteri (chief Medea) was established in 1548. The last Bey Mostefa Boumezrag ran it from 1819 to 1830, when the French arrived. In 1837, after the Treaty of Tafna, Abd El-Kader Medea became one of its capitals.
One of the largest pharmaceutical production units in Algeria (Saidal-Antibiotical) is located in Medea.
Shoe factories also established in Takbou and M'salah.
- Amine Megateli - Professional footballer
- Jean Richepin - French poet and writer, member of Académie française
- Djamel Tlemçani - Professional footballer
- Mohamed Bousseria - Moudjahid