Schwarzenacker Roman Museum

The Schwarzenacker Roman Museum (German: Römermuseum Schwarzenacker) is an archaeological open-air museum in Schwarzenacker in Saarland (Germany) with several partly-recreated structures. The museum was constructed by archaeologist Alfonso Kolling who also led the archaeological excavations at the site. The site shows the remains of a Gallo-Roman settlement (the ancient name of which is lost) which existed from the beginning of the 1st century AD until its destruction by the Alemanni in 275 AD. Today visitors can walk among the ruins and replicas of the buildings.

Coordinates: 49° 16′ 58″ N, 7° 19′ 0″ E

Around 2,000 people inhabited the settlement which covered an area of approximately 25-30 hectares. The inhabitants benefited from the nearby Roman military and trade routes leading from Augusta Treverorum (Trier) to Argentoratum (Strasbourg) and from Divodurum (Metz) to Augusta Vangionum (Worms). This gave rise to a highly prestigious residential, commercial and administrative centre.

The urban planning of the settlement showed a clear Roman influence with streets intersecting at right angles. The main streets were flanked by large drainage channels while covered walkways led to the shop counters and workshops. Fresh water, pumped from deep wells, was supplied by pipelines of clay and wood. A stone relief with Venus, Cupid, and the Three Graces was found in one of the wells. The half-timbered houses of varying sizes were sometimes decorated with high-quality frescoes and ceiling paintings. One house differed from the standard types; it had a hall with a large cellar with a row of five columns running along the centre to support the wooden ceiling of the cellar (two of them were table columns with round stone slabs). Life-size figures were represented on one of the walls of the house. Six bronze statuettes were also found in the cellar: a Genius populi Romani; a seated Mercury with wild boar, a rooster; a standing Mercury; an Apollo, a seated Neptune; and a Victory. The house was probably the seat of a cult.

In the adjoining 18th century Baroque villa, important finds from Roman everyday life are exhibited (although the most important ones are in the Museum of Pre- and Early History in Saarbrücken). In front of the Baroque Edelhaus stand life-size replicas of two unfinished Roman equestrian sculptures which were discovered in 1887 in a Roman quarry at Breitfurt. They weight about 5000 kg each and are considered to be the largest Roman statues found north of the Alps.

PORTFOLIO

Reconstruction of the Gallo-Roman Temple of Mercury from the nearby site of "Tempelbezirk Klosterwald".
Reconstruction of the Gallo-Roman Temple (fanum) of Mercury from the nearby site of “Tempelbezirk Klosterwald”.
Reconstruction of the Gallo-Roman Temple of Mercury from the nearby site of "Tempelbezirk Klosterwald".
Reconstruction of the Gallo-Roman Temple (fanum) of Mercury from the nearby site of “Tempelbezirk Klosterwald”.
The interior (cella) of the reconstructed Gallo-Roman Temple of Mercury from the nearby site of "Tempelbezirk Klosterwald".
The interior (cella) of the reconstructed Gallo-Roman Temple of Mercury from the nearby site of “Tempelbezirk Klosterwald”.
Complete reconstruction (in colour) of a Jupiter column.
Complete reconstruction (in colour) of a Jupiter column found in 1922.
columns of the arcades on the north-south main road. In the background is the Taberna of Capitolinus at the intersection with the east-west main street of the vicus.
The north-south main street of the vicus flanked by broad sewers and colonnaded porticoes. In the background is the Taberna of Capitolinus at the intersection with the east-west main street of the settlement.
The north-south main street with in the background is the Taberna of Capitolinus and the House of the Ophthalmologist.
The reconstructed Taberna of Capitolinus.....
The reconstructed Taberna of Capitolinus.
The guest room of the Taberna Capitolinus with original stone table. Tabernae were the fast food restaurants of the Romans.
The guest room of the Taberna Capitolinus with original stone table. Tabernae were the fast food restaurants of the Romans.
The counter the Taberna of Capitolinus with embedded earthenware jars used to store dried food like nuts.
The counter the Taberna of Capitolinus with embedded earthenware jars used to store dried food like nuts.
The reconstructed House of the Ophthalmologist along the east-west main street of the vicus.
The partially reconstructed House of the Ophthalmologist facing the east-west main street of the settlement. The name of the house takes its name from the ophthalmic artefacts found in the house.
Reception Room of the Hous of the Ophthalmologist.
The reconstructed triclinium of the House of the Ophthalmologist.
room which rested on many small supports bathed in warm air (hypocaust)
The reconstructed triclinium of the House of the Ophthalmologist rested on pillars of tiles from the under floor heating system known as a hypocaust.
The reconstructed House of the Ophthalmologist along the east-west main street of the vicus.
The reconstructed House of the Ophthalmologist along the east-west main street of the settlement.
Rear view of the partially reconstructed house. The ditch is a drainage channel. The painted wing of the building is the reconstructed dining area of the house.
Rear view of the partially reconstructed House of the Ophthalmologist with the kitchen area with ovens and cooking sets and an underground cellar.
Underground cellar of the House of the Ophthalmologist with openings in the stone structure used to support wooden beams on which upper floors were built. The cellar had oval shaped niches which were used to display statues of Roman Gods.
The reconstructed House of the Columns.
The partially reconstructed House of the Columns.
The cellar of the House of the Columns with a row of five columns (two of them were table columns: round stone slabs) that carried the wooden ceiling of the cellar.
The cellar of the House of the Columns with a row of five columns (two of them were table columns with round stone slabs) that carried the wooden ceiling of the cellar.
The partially reconstructed House of the Columns.
The partially reconstructed House of the Columns.
Fresco with a life-size figure from the House of the Columns.
Fresco with a life-size figure from the House of the Columns.
The north-south main street.
The north-south main street.
Foundations of buildings behind the north-south main street.
Foundations of buildings behind the House of the Columns.
The Edelhaus dating back to the early 18th century (1725). It houses the museum archaeological finds (mainly replicas, originals in Saarebrucken) and and other paintings from contemporary painters of the region. For noble house is designed in the Baroque style garden, which was created after the excavation of the Vicus.
The Edelhaus dating back to the early 18th century (1725) which houses the archaeological finds (mainly replicas, originals in Saarbrücken) and 18th century paintings from painters of the region. The Baroque style garden was created after the excavation of the Gallo-Roman settlement.
Pair of life-size replicas of two unfinished Roman equestrian statues which were discovered in 1887 in a Roman quarry at Breitfurt (the originals are in the museum in Speyer). They are considered to be the largest Roman statues found north of the Alps.

The site is open daily from 9am to 5pm from April to October and from 10am to 4pm from November to March. It is closed in December and January.

Website: www.roemermuseum-schwarzenacker.de

4 thoughts on “Schwarzenacker Roman Museum

    • Hi Rita, thank you so much for your offer. I have been working on my itinerary and I don’t think I will have time to visit the eastern part of the island. I already visited this part of the island in 2004 and the priority this time is to visit Phaistos and Gortyn and to go to Chania Museum to photograph the head of Hadrian. If anything changes and I can make it to Agios Nikolaos I will of course let you know.

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  1. Hi Carole, You will love Phaistos and Gortyn. What a shame I missed you in 2004 . Enjoy your visit and I will look forward to your post with your usual high standard photo’s.

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