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Diocletian'S Palace

Reconstruction of Diocletian's Palace (E.Herbrard, 1912)

Diocletian'S Palace

Reconstruction of Diocletian's Palace (ground plan made by J. Marasović)

Diocletian's Palace is among the best preserved monuments of the Roman building heritage in the world. Owing to the research done during 20th century by an Austrian G. Niemann and by a French E. Herbrard, based on the previous research done by an Englishman R. Adam in 18th century, the original layout of the Palace has been disclosed. More systematic research and study of the Palace have been conducted since 1950s.

The imperial palace has been constructed as an appropriate interpolation of various contents of a luxurious villa - the Emperor's summer residence into the scheme of a Roman military camp (castrum), divided into four quarters by two main streets. There were Emperor's quarters situated in the southern section of the Palace, and it was the place where all official and religious ceremonies took place, while, on the other hand, the lodgings of the servants, Emperor's guard and soldiers were situated in the northern section, where the warehouses and the workshops were also located.

The Palace is a rectangular building (some 215m by 180 m) , with four big towers at its corners, with four gates on each side and four small towers on its walls. There are no openings on the lower parts of the walls, while, on the upper parts there is a monumental porch on the south side, and there are arcades on the other three sides.

During the following centuries, the residents of the Palace and the citizens of the city have adapted this space for their needs, and so both the buildings within the Palace and the external walls with towers have greatly changed their original appearance.

The extensions added along the eastern and the northern wall of the Palace during the following centuries, were demolished after the World War 2, so the original appearance of the Palace was revealed.