THE ROMAN BATHS OF ANKARA
The Roman Baths are located on Çankırı Caddesi between Ulus and Yıldırım Beyazıt squares, on the West Side of the Street, about 400 meters from Ulus. They are situated on a plateau which rises 2.5 meters above Street level.
It was known from historical sources that there was bath in Ankara in ancient times. First remains related to bath was uncovered during a construction work in 1931. Large Bath is consisting of two sections which are palaestra (sports area) and bath complex. Bath’s size is approximately 140,00 x 180,00 m. and palaestra on its north-east corner measures 95,00 x 95,00 m. . It is considered that Large Bath was constructed during the period of Emperor Caracalla (211-217 AD) due to finds and coins uncovered in excavations.
The platform on which the baths stood is an ancient city mound. At the top of mound are remains from the Roman period (with some mixture of Byzantine and Seljuk material); at the bottom are remains from a Phrygian settlement.
In the area traditionally known as Çankırı Kapı, Roman remains of two different types can be distinguished.
1- A Strech of columned roadway from the ancient Roman city of Ancyra.
2- The Roman bath and palaestra buildings.
In the area are traces of foundations of other Roman Buildings.
OPEN AIR MUSEUM
Approximately covers 65.000 m2 , Ankara Roman Bath Site has been gained an appearance of Open Air Museum with the works between 1997-2001.
In this site, more than 1000 various objects on the site has been separated into main groups as “Steles, Inscriptions and Architectural Fragments” and displayed. On the south and west side of Palastra, the steles; North side, inscripted block, postaments and water pipe objects; on the eastside, altars etc. and the other architectural fragments on the middle part, sarcophagus ands tatue of lion objects are arranged.
Displayed steles mostly belong to Roman and Byzantine period.
Inscriped block objects generally consist of inscriptions and milestones. These are the objects that have knowledge on their dates. For example, we can learn besides establishing an association of the retired soldiers of Ankara in the period of Emperor Vespasianus (A.D. 69-79) and information about economical, social, cultural and commercial structure and sportive activities of the era from these inscriptions.
Moreover, indicated good work samples the architectural fragments that belong to the Roman Period buildings in this site are displayed. And a Nike Relief Block shaped victory monument and capitals of column, bases of column and the other small architectural fragments are among the exhibited objects on the west side of closed bath section.
In these areas, walking courses have been done for visitors can be toured easily and environmental arrangements have been carried out.