Marble Arch (Libya)
The Marble Arch (Italian: Arco dei Fileni), formerly known in Libya as El Gaus (i.e. The Arch), was a monument in Libya built during the days of Italian colonization. The arch marked the border between Italian Tripolitania and Cyrenaica, and was located on the Libyan Coastal Highway near Ra's Lanuf. It was designed by architect Florestano Di Fausto in response to a request by the Italian Governor-General Italo Balbo. It was unveiled on 16 March 1937 in a lavish night ceremony attended by Benito Mussolini.
The arch was named after the legendary Philaeni brothers of Carthage. Remains of the two large bronze statues of the Philene brothers and parts of the marble reliefs are located in a small museum in Medinat Sultan, around 50 km from Sirte.
The arch stood 31 meters high, with an opening 15.75 meters high and 6.5 meters wide.
The arch had an inscription in Latin at the top of the structure which was taken from Horace's Carmen Saeculare. It read: Alme Sol, possis nihil urbe Roma visere maius which translates to: "Oh kind Sun, may you never look upon a city greater than Rome".
The arch was demolished by dynamite in the 1970s by the revolutionary regime of Muammar Gaddafi.
- Philip Kenrick. Tripolitania: Libya Archaeological Guides. Silphium Press, London, 2009. 224 pages. pp. 152–157.
- The Conquest of North Africa 1940 to 1943, p. 352, at Google Books
- Libya handbook: the travel guide, p. 135, at Google Books
- Combat reporter: Don Whitehead's World War II diary and memoirs, p. 80, at Google Books
- George MacDonald Fraser. “Bo Geesty”, McAuslan in the Rough
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Marble Arch.|
- World war II talk about the Marble Arch
- L'arco dei Fileni de Mussolini (in French)
- Close-up photo taken in the 1940s
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