Massive 2,000-Year-Old Plaza from Mysterious Roman City Unearthed in Spain

The ruins of a massive 2,000-year-old Roman plaza have been found at La Cabañeta archaeological site in Spain. It is the oldest-known public square uncovered in the interior of the Iberian Peninsula, according to a release from the University of Zaragoza.

Located along the banks of the Ebro River in northeastern Spain, the city was founded around 200 BCE. The city was destroyed during the Sertorian War, a civil war that occurred roughly a century after its founding around 70 BCE; however, not much else is known about the city—not even its name.

In July, archaeologists began excavating the central area, where they found the ruins, following nearly a decade-long hiatus. There, they uncovered a plaza surrounded by a portico with craft tiles and chambers which likely served a commercial purpose. The city was organized in a grid and, given its river-side location, would have made an efficient transportation hub for merchants.

Researchers hope to learn more about Roman habitation in the region, where the Roman Empire had multiple provinces, from studying the plaza.

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