Roman Theatre at Palmyra
|Roman Theatre at Palmyra
المسرح الروماني بتدمر
Overview of the Roman Theatre at Palmyra
|Width||92 metres (302 ft)|
The Roman Theatre at Palmyra (Arabic: المسرح الروماني بتدمر) is a Roman theatre in ancient Palmyra in the Syrian Desert. The unfinished theatre dates back to the second-century CE Severan period. The theatre's remains have since been restored and it serves as a venue for the annual Palmyra festival.
The second-century CE theatre was built in the center of a semicircular colonnaded piazza which opens up to the South Gate of Palmyra. The 82 by 104 metres (269 by 341 ft) piazza was located to the south-west of the main colonnaded street. The unfinished cavea is 92 metres (302 ft) in diameter and consists only of an ima cavea, the lowest section of the cavea, directly surrounding the orchestra. The ima cavea is organized into eleven cunei of twelve rows each and faces north-northeast towards the cardo maximus. The theatre's aditus maximus, its main entrance, is 3.5 metres (11 ft) in width, and leads to a stone-paved orchestra with a diameter of 23.5 metres (77 ft). The orchestra is bounded by a circular wall with a diameter of 20.3 metres (67 ft).
The proscenium wall is decorated with ten curved and nine rectangular niches placed alternately. The stage measures 45.5 by 10.5 metres (149 by 34 ft) and is accessed by two staircases. The scaenae frons had five doors: the main entrance, or regia, built in broad curved niche; two guest doors on either side of the regia, or hospitalis, built in shallow rectangular niche; and two extra doors on either end of the stage. Emperor Nero was known to have placed his statue in the niche of the regia of the theatre at Palmyra. The columns at the stage are built in the Corinthian order.
In the 1950s the theatre was cleared from the sand and subsequently underwent restoration works.
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