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Excavation

  • Volubilis (Site B)
  • Site B
  • Volubilis, Walila
  • Morocco
  • Fès-Meknès

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Credits

  • The Moroccan database is the result of a collaboration between:

    the Institut National des Sciences de l'Archeologie et du Patrimoine and

    AIAC

  • AIAC_logo logo

Summary (English)

  • Archaeological excavations undertaken outside the Roman walls of Volubilis between 2000 and 2005 by the Moroccan-British team (INSAP-UCL) have allowed us to better understand the evolution of the occupation of this area of the medieval town of Walīla or Walīlata. In this area two major post-Roman phases are clearly visible.

    In the first phase we find a group of structures that comprise: a courtyard building, probably domestic, a reception hall that opens onto a road and a second courtyard, a bath complex, or hammam and a large building whose open courtyard was occupied by large pits, of which at least 10 may be interpreted as grain silos.

    Many pre-Idrissid coins come from the site, while a coin of Idrīs II was found on the floor of the storage building. These finds, together with radiocarbon dates for the silos, allow us to date the buildings to the last two decades of the eighth century. It is at this time (172 H / 788 CE) that the descendant of Ali Ibn Abî Tâlib, Idrīs I, arrived in Walila, where he was declared imam by the Awraba tribe. We interpret this group of structures as his headquarters, built, as in many other cases, outside the existing town. Coins found in the stratigraphy show that the occupation of this quarter lasted until the period of Mohamed Ibn Idrīs (213–221 h / 828–836).

    The second phase is represented by a series of structures with one or two rooms and a courtyard: these are interpreted as houses, and date to the tenth century.

  • Elizabeth Fentress 

Director

  • Elizabeth Fentress
  • Hassan Limane

Team

  • Alaa el Habashi
  • Catherine Fentress
  • Abdallah Fili - Université Al-Jadida
  • Victoria Amoroz Ruiz
  • Guy Hunt - L - P : Archaeology
  • Helen Dawson
  • Tarik Moujoud

Research Body

  • Institut Nationale des Sciences de l’Archéologie et du Patrimoine
  • University College London

Funding Body

  • The British Museum
  • Volubilis Foundation
  • World Monuments Fund

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