The Romans governed the whole of Spain for more than six centuries. Seville was founded by the Phoenicians, who gave it the name of Hispalis: the Romans called it Julia.
The Romans used the city as a commercial capital, and they built on the outskirts of Seville, a colony called Italica, where two of the most important emperors of the Roman Empire were born: Trajan and Hadrian.
The Romans left a large impression in Seville. These are the five most important points of the Roman Seville:
Roman Ruins of Italica
The Roman Ruins of Italica was founded in 206 BC by General Scipio after the victory against the Carthaginians in the Battle of Ilipa. Italica was the point of origin of most of the senators of the time, and birthplace of the emperors Trajan and Hadrian. Today, Italica preserves a wonderful Roman amphitheater, and offers the opportunity to walk along the ancient streets and see some houses and public buildings of that era.Read more about the Roman Ruins of Italica
Archaeological Museum of Seville
The fascinating Archaeological Museum of Seville is housed in a grandiose, neo-Renaissance palace at the southern end of the Parque de María Luisa.
The museum holds many Roman-era artworks such as Roman sculptures, mosaics and statues many unearthed at the nearby site of Itálica.Read more about the Archeological Museum of Seville
Antiqvarium of Seville
The Antiqvarium of Seville is a museum that encloses the visible remains of much of the Roman period, from Tiberius (AD 30) to the sixth century, and the Almohad Islamic house of the XII and XIII centuries. The Mosaic of the Bird House is spectacular.Read more about the Museo Arqueologico Antiquarium
Palace of the Countess of Lebrija
The Palace of the Countess of Lebrija is in the heart of the city, it has very well preserved Roman mosaics, as well as columns, amphorae, vessels, sculptures and vases. The Countess gathered an interesting collection of artifacts from the Roman period.
You can see a famous Roman mosaic, the Loves of Zeus which came from Italica, in the main courtyard. The rooms of the palace were designed by José Sayez y Lopez to take into account the size of the mosaics they were to contain.
You will also be able to see the bust of Dionysus; a small sarcophagus with a relief depicting a lion hunt and a putto or a cherub riding a dolphin.Read more about the Palacio de Lebrija
The Alameda de Hercules
The Alameda de Hercules is a park area which was originally laid out in the late 16th century and became a fashionable promenade during the city’s 17th-century Golden Age.
The park is marked by 4 columns, the two Roman columns at its southern end were part of a Roman temple, and they are topped with statues of Hercules and Julius Caesar.Read more about the Alameda de Hércules
Roman Remains at El Giraldillo
The Giralda or bell tower of the Cathedral was originally built at the end of the 12th century, as the minaret of a large mosque built by the Almohades, who dominated the region.
Construction of its minaret started in 1184 and to form a solid foundation for it, the Moors made a deep hole, into which they cast all the marble and stone monuments of the Romans that could be found. At the foot of the Giralda one can still find inscriptions dating back to the era of emperor Augustus.Read more about the El Giralda
Cathedral's Ancient Columns
The Seville Cathedral is surrounded by hundred fifty-seven small granite or veined marbles columns linked by huge chains. These columns and chains were placed in 1565 to prevent the merchants from entering the temple with their horses when the weather was bad.
It is likely that many of the columns came from the nearby Roman ruins of Italica.Read more about the Seville Cathedral
Casa de Pilatos
The Casa de Pilatos contains a number of artifacts of Roman origin. The main courtyard has statues of a dancer, Minerva and Ceres and a bust of Scipio Africanus.
Pedro Afan Enriquez de Ribera was Viceroy of Naples in 1559-1571 and in that period, similar to many Italian cardinals and noblemen, he gathered a collection of antique statues which he eventually sent home to Casa de Pilatos in Seville.
It is difficult to say whether the ancient statues and busts adorn Casa de Pilatos comes from Italy or Italica.Read more about the Casa de Pilatos