The City Of Alexander The Great Essay

The City Of Alexander The Great Essay

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In 323 BC, under the rule of Alexander the great, the city of Gerasa was apart of the ten municipal cities that were recognized as the Decopolis. The city of Gerasa was a Hellenistic settlement and its founding years were predominately influenced by Greek culture. Eventually, the Roman Empire took control of the Decopolis and added their own temples roads and structures to pre-existing cities such as Gerasa. The year AD 106 was a monumental time for the Roman Empire as Emperor Trajan annexed parts of Arabia and southern Jordan, to expand the Empire even further. As a result of the newly created Roman province, the city of Gerasa underwent extensive expansion and re-development in the time following Trajans rule. Because the area was previously a Hellenistic settlement, this particular time period of urban morphology allowed for a unique synthesis of Hellenistic and Roman architecture. Modern day Gerasa is a product of this impressive hybridization of culture and its architecture exemplifies blend of cultures. Hadrian’s arch as well as the Temples of Artemis and Zeus were constructed in Gerasa during the reign of the Roman Empire. Today, they are some of the most impressive and important structures of the Near East. This paper will examine Garesa’s monumental buildings and unique urban planning in order gain a greater understanding of the synthesis of cultures and how the imperial city influences earlier Hellenistic settlement.
As we consider Gerasa and its unique hybridization of Hellenistic and Roman design, it is important understand the evolution of architecture within the city. The temple of Artemis is considered one of the most significant monuments of Roman religious architecture in the Near East due to its size and grand s...


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Although expansion did not occur all the way to the edge of the city walls, the strategic positioning of the arch is representative of the city that the Roman Empire may have envisioned. Its architecture is not as heavily influenced by the classical world as the Temple of Artemis and Zeus, and included some elements influenced by the Nabatean culture instead. However, the arch symbolizes the expansive and ambitious development of the Roman Empires influence on Gerasa.
As we examine the pre-existing Hellenistic settlment of Gerasa it becomes clear that the Roman Empire impacted the city and its architecture significantly. A unique blend of Hellenistic and Roman design flourished during the rule of the Roman Empire, and this architectural phenomenon attributes to the impressive nature and design of the city that still exists today.

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