Caesarea was built by the king Herod the Great about 25 BCE as the port city and served as an administrative center of Judea Province of the Roman Empire.
Herod built Caesarea into the grandest city other than Jerusalem and as a splendid Roman style city complete with a theater, amphitheater, hippodrome, palace, Roman temple and an extensive network of aqueducts.
Built on a section of unprotected coastline that once served as a Phoenician ship landing, Herod even created an artificial harbor. Herod the Great renamed it Caesarea in honor of the Roman emperor Caesar Augustus. The city was chiefly a commercial centre relying on trade.
In 22 BCE, Herod began construction of a deep sea harbor and built storerooms, markets, wide roads, baths, temples to Rome and Augustus, and imposing public buildings. Every five years the city hosted major sports competitions, gladiator games, and theatrical productions in its theatre overlooking the Mediterranean Sea.
Caesarea is located on the Israeli coastal plain, the historic land bridge between Europe, Asia and Africa approximately halfway between the major cities of Tel Aviv and Haifa.
November 30th, 2012
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