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Ruins of Tiddis
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Location Algeria
Region Constantine Province
Coordinates 36°27′48″N6°29′02″E / 36.463333°N 6.483889°E / 36.463333; 6.483889

Tiddis (also known as Castellum Tidditanorum or Tiddi [1] ) was a Roman city that depended on Cirta and a bishopric as Tiddi, which remains a Latin Catholic titular see.

Roman Empire period of Imperial Rome following the Roman Republic (27 BC–395 AD)

The Roman Empire was the post-Roman Republic period of the ancient Roman civilization. It had a government headed by emperors and large territorial holdings around the Mediterranean Sea in Europe, North Africa, and West Asia. From the constitutional reforms of Augustus to the military anarchy of the third century, the Empire was a principate ruled from the city of Rome. The Roman Empire was then divided between a Western Roman Empire, based in Milan and later Ravenna, and an Eastern Roman Empire, based in Nicomedia and later Constantinople, and it was ruled by multiple emperors.


Cirta, also known by various other names in antiquity, was the ancient Berber and Roman settlement which later became Constantine, Algeria. Cirta was the capital city of the Berber kingdom of Numidia; its strategically important port city was Russicada. Although Numidia was a key ally of the ancient Roman Republic during the Punic Wars, Cirta was subject to Roman invasions during the 2nd and 1st centuries BC. Eventually it fell under Roman dominion during the time of Julius Caesar. Cirta was then repopulated with Roman colonists by Caesar and Augustus and was surrounded by a "confederation of free Roman cities" such as Tiddis, Cuicul, and Milevum. The city was destroyed in the beginning of the 4th century and was rebuilt by the Roman emperor Constantine the Great, who gave his name to the newly constructed city, Constantine. The Vandals damaged Cirta, but emperor Justinian I reconquered and improved the Roman city. It declined in importance after the Muslim invasions, but a small community continued at the site for several centuries. Its ruins are now an archaeological site.

A titular see in various churches is an episcopal see of a former diocese that no longer functions, sometimes called a "dead diocese".


It was located on the territory of the current commune of Bni Hamden in the Constantine Province of eastern Algeria. [2]

Constantine Province Province in Algeria

Constantine is one of the 48 provinces (wilayas) of Algeria, whose capital is the city of the same name.

Algeria country in North Africa

Algeria, officially the People's Democratic Republic of Algeria, is a country in the Maghreb region of North Africa. The capital and most populous city is Algiers, located in the far north of the country on the Mediterranean coast. With an area of 2,381,741 square kilometres (919,595 sq mi), Algeria is the tenth-largest country in the world, and the largest in Africa. Algeria is bordered to the northeast by Tunisia, to the east by Libya, to the west by Morocco, to the southwest by the Western Saharan territory, Mauritania, and Mali, to the southeast by Niger, and to the north by the Mediterranean Sea. The country is a semi-presidential republic consisting of 48 provinces and 1,541 communes (counties). It has the highest Human development index of all non-island African countries.


Tiddis was built by the Romans and arranged according to their system of urbanization. [3] [4]

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This prosperous town, established on a plateau, had a monumental gate, baths, industrial facilities (tanneries), a sanctuary to Mithras dating back to the 4th century BC, and also a Christian chapel. [5] [6]

The native town became Romanized just like the other towns near Cirta. Today one can cross it by following the main street as it goes from a monumental portal up between the houses, passing by the forum, a small square, and the curia. From inscriptions one knows the magistrates and decurions of the castellum. It belonged to the colony of Cirta and, with the other colonies of Rusicade, Milev and Chullu, formed part of the confederation of the IV colonies. Also among the public monuments cleared thus far are the public baths and cisterns (built by M. Cocceius Anicius Faustus in the middle of the 3d c. A.D.) and on top of the crag a Temple of Saturn (which produced a great number of stelae now in the Constantine Museum). On the slopes of the cliff one can see many houses and the remains of the original rampart of the castellum. The Lollii were one of the important families of the town. Their circular mausoleum can still be seen some kilometers to the N. The monument was erected by Lollius Urbicus, prefect of the city of Rome under Antoninus Pius. At the end of the 5th c. the town is known to have been the seat of a bishopric. Two Christian basilicas have been cleared. One was located at the entrance of the town; the other was in a more distant district and has been only partially cleared. [7]

Roman temple ancient temple of the Roman culture

Ancient Roman temples were among the most important buildings in Roman culture, and some of the richest buildings in Roman architecture, though only a few survive in any sort of complete state. Today they remain "the most obvious symbol of Roman architecture". Their construction and maintenance was a major part of ancient Roman religion, and all towns of any importance had at least one main temple, as well as smaller shrines. The main room (cella) housed the cult image of the deity to whom the temple was dedicated, and often a small altar for incense or libations. Behind the cella was a room or rooms used by temple attendants for storage of equipment and offerings. The ordinary worshipper rarely entered the cella, and most public ceremonies were performed outside, on the portico, with a crowd gathered in the temple precinct.

Saturn (mythology) god in Ancient Rome mythology

Saturn is a god in ancient Roman religion, and a character in myth as a god of generation, dissolution, plenty, wealth, agriculture, periodic renewal and liberation. In later developments, he also came to be a god of time. His reign was depicted as a Golden Age of plenty and peace. The Temple of Saturn in the Roman Forum housed the state treasury. In December, he was celebrated at what is perhaps the most famous of the Roman festivals, the Saturnalia, a time of feasting, role reversals, free speech, gift-giving and revelry. Saturn the planet and Saturday are both named after the god.

Castles and water tanks of all forms remind us that the city has gradually been abandoned because it lacked sources. One can admire the mausoleum that Quintus Lollius Urbicus, a native of Tiddis (and son of a romanised Berber landowner) who then became prefect of Rome. [1] [8]

Quintus Lollius Urbicus was a Berber governor of Roman Britain between the years 139 and 142, during the reign of the Emperor Antoninus Pius. He is named in the Historia Augusta, although it is not entirely historical, and his name appears on five Roman inscriptions from Britain; his career is set out in detail on a pair of inscriptions set up in his native Tiddis, near Cirta, Numidia.

Today, Tiddis is an authentic Roman site called Res eddar or the "peak of the House" located in the Gorge of the Khreneg, just north of Cirta. [9] It marks the presence of a Roman civilization through rock art inscriptions and Roman pottery.

Ecclesiastical history

Under Byzantine control, Castellum Tidditanorum had two small churches and was the see of a diocese. [10]

Four bishops are assigned by Morcelli to this see, but Mesnage and Jaubert believe they were bishops of Tisedi, leaving only

The Christian community probably disappeared with the Arab conquest in the second half of the 7th century, but some pottery remains showed the survival of a small village inside the ruins of Tiddis until the 9th century. [11]

Titular see

Famous locals

See also

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  1. 1 2 Carcopino, Jérôme (1942). "Le travail archéologique en Algérie pendant la guerre (1939-1942)". Comptes rendus des séances de l'Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres (in French). 86 (4): 301–319. doi:10.3406/crai.1942.85702.
  2. Mounir Bouchenaki, ancient cities of Algeria, collection Art and Culture No. 12, Algiers, Ministry of Information and Culture, 1978 (114 p.) ( ISBN   84-399-7904-5)
  3. Serge Lancel, the ancient Algeria, Editions Mengès, 2003, ( ISBN   2-85620-431-7)
  4. André Berthier, Tiddis, cited ancient Numidia, les Belles lettres, 2000 Acad.
  5. André Berthier, the Numidia, Rome and the Maghreb, Ed.picard, 1981.
  6. André Berthier, R.S. Davis and c. Ogle, new research on the Bellum Jugurthinum, 2001.
  7. Stillwell, Richard. The Princeton Encyclopedia of Classical Sites . Retrieved 17 December 2017.
  8. André Berthier, j. July, r. Charlier, the Bellum Jugurthinum of Sallust and the problem of Chen, R.S.A.C., 1949
  9. "Africa agostiniana: la numidia". www.cassiciaco.it (in Italian). Retrieved 2018-01-29.
  10. "Siti archeologici africani: Tiddis". www.cassiciaco.it (in Italian). Retrieved 2018-01-29.
  11. Andre Berthier. "Tiddis", Introduction


Coordinates: 36°27′48″N6°29′02″E / 36.46333°N 6.48389°E / 36.46333; 6.48389