Tel al-Karameh (تل الكرامة) is the site of a substantial section of Roman road (الطريق الروماني) that remains remarkably well preserved. While a large network of roads was maintained in Syria throughout the Roman and Byzantine periods, this is one of the few sections that is still visible today. Elsewhere, their paths have only been able to be reconstructed through aerial photography and written records, occasionally supported by archaeological remains such as waterholes and milestones.
The remaining stretch of road at Tel al-Karameh (تل الكرامة) is roughly 1,200 meters in length and was built using more solid construction methods to navigate the steep slope upon which it was built. The road is supported on a base held with containing walls filled with rubble, with limestone paving on the top. This provides a good illustration of Roman road building techniques, though the road was partly reconstructed during the French period.
This road formed part of the route from Antioch (the capital of the province of Syria) to Chalcis ad Belum (Qinnasrin), Beroia (Aleppo) and on to Mesopotamia. It was likely constructed during the later part of the second century, during a peak in Roman construction and road building activity in Syria. While there is no direct evidence for the date of the road’s construction, an inscription at a nearby site inside the Syrian/Turkish no man’s land has Marcus Aurelius, who ruled from 161 AD to 180 AD, taking credit.
Getting There: Tel al-Karameh (تل الكرامة) is fairly easy to reach, as microbuses bound for several destinations pass by here. Take any microbus from Aleppo (حلب) headed to al-Dana (الدانا), Sarmada (سرمدا), or Harem (حارم) and ask to be let off at al-Tariq al-Romani (الطريق الروماني). It takes about 30 minutes to reach the site, which is visible from the highway (which crosses over it at a point).
Coordinates: 36°11’15.05″N / 36°46’44.19″E
Transliteration Variants: Tel al-Kharameh, Tel al-Karama, Tel al-Kharama, Tel al-Karamah, Tel al-Kharamah, Tell Karameh, Tell al-Kharameh, Tell al-Karama, Tell al-Kharama, Tell al-Karamah, Tell al-Kharamah, Tal Karameh, Tal al-Kharameh, Tal al-Karama, Tal al-Kharama, Tal al-Karamah, Tal al-Kharamah
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