The houses beyond the house: Tour of the remains behind the Domvs Romana

Heritage Malta will be organising two guided tours exploring the remains behind the rich Roman town house currently referred as the Domvs Romana. This event will be held next Saturday 5th May.

The Domvs Romana, situated just outside the walls of the city of Mdina, does not only preserve some of the most precious Roman remains, but also allows visitors to get a glimpse into the life of a Roman domestic household. Apart from showing the complex history of the site itself, the current museum display is in fact designed to take the visitor through the various aspects of a Roman family and their household. Also on display at the museum are the polychrome mosaics that originally adorned the house’s peristyle and surrounding rooms. These mosaics are regarded as some of the finest in the central Mediterranean.

These remains were discovered on the 3rd of February 1881, when workers digging holes for the planting of trees on Mdina’s esplanade hit upon its mosaics floors. In September 1920 excavation works began in the areas to the north of the domus, now located at the back of the museum but which originally formed the front of the house, as well as the fields to the east of the road leading down to Mtarfa Train Station. Here ruins datable to between the 3rd and 4th century AD were uncovered.

But what are these remains? How are they connected with the remains of the rich domus discovered in 1881? What do they tell us about the ancient Roman town of Melite?

The two guided tours will commence at 10.30am and at 1.30pm. Only a limited number of tickets are available. TICKETS at €10 for adults, €9 for seniors and students, and €8 for Heritage Malta members and children, are available from all Heritage Malta museums and sites, and from the agency’s website. Coffee break included.