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Raphana of the Decapolis and its successor Arpha - The search for an eminent Greco-Roman Cityuse asterix (*) to get italics
Jens Kleb
<p style="text-align: justify;">This research paper presents a detailed analysis of ancient literature and archaeological and geographical research until the present day for an important ancient location in the southern part of Syria. This one had different names during the time, Raepta, Raphana of the Decapolis, and later Arpha or Arefa.</p> <p style="text-align: justify;"><br>Moreover, the paper offers a more plausible location where Raphana, a Decapolis city named by Pliny the Elder, can be located. Ar-Rafi’ah, located in modern-day Syria, lies at an important geostrategic position close to a strong well, which is known today as Bir Qassab. It is highly plausible that this is where the ancient city mentioned above was situated. It can be shown within the literature analysis and maps that, due to completely different interpretations and in spite of missing archaeological evidence, many hypothetical locations were included in previous scientific literature. However, none of them fulfilled the requirements for the places described in the ancient literature. As a result, current well-researched literature provides the ancient Name of Raphana with question marks or even completely omits the name from listings or maps. Therefore, the last chapter focuses on the aforementioned unexplored and largely completely unknown location of Ar-Rafi’ah. In addition to a large main fortress and numerous probable civilian structures, an unusual accumulation of 11 new discovered auxiliary forts or “Stratopedon” can be proven in the presumed urban area. Remains of a Qanat and channel system clearly connected with this location can be detected over a length of more than 10km. Lastly, the shape of an extensive ruin inside the fortress city walls indicates a potential theatre or Odeon. Based on still today common geographical names direct nearby for Localities, plains, and way relations, the allocation becomes additionally more plausible.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p>
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decapolis; roman aqueducts; roman surveying; archaeology in northern jordan and southern syria; ancient geography;
Landscape archaeology, Mediterranean, Spatial analysis, Theoretical archaeology
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2021-12-30 13:54:32
Luc Doyon