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Wroxeter[750 x 369 jpg]
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|Description ||Roman Gallery: A cutaway view of part of Wroxeter's baths.|
We may have the Emperor Hadrian to thank for help in the building of Wroxeter's (and other city's) public baths. There were few public baths around in Britain in the first century AD, but a big building program in the mid second century. Could it just be a coincidence that Hadrian cancelled billions of sesterces owed to the treasury by impoverished municipalities and the baths sprang up after that? Or that a plaque dedicated to Hadrian was erected over the entrance to Wroxeter's forum? We'll never know. Whatever the reason, the 30 year gap since the beginning and halting of the construction of the baths was restarted in 150 AD.
The forum and bath's basilica, however, had been completed in 130 AD. The forum was not only a marketplace but a home to the forum basilica: the seat of power for the tribal council. The bath's basilica, on the other hand, was a cathedral-sized exercise and socializing hall. Its size shows the important of socializing in Roman society and it is estimated that over 1000 people could have passed through per day. It was open to rich and poor alike and would have not only been filled with sweating men, woman and children, but with vendors selling their wares including Roman hamburgers!
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