The Captain House and the Roman Port in Ancona

In Ancona port area, and among the numerous historical town vestiges, you will find the “Captain House”. You can reach it walking along the port dock, going towards the right sea side; the building, frankly a bit hidden from the walls serving as port protection, was built up in the second century b.C., when Ancona became a basis for the Roman fleet patrolling Adriatic Sea. It is a medieval style house of the XIII century that survived to the second world war bombs attacks.

On its front side looking towards the sea, you will admire two big stone lancet arches bordering the entries to the house and to the stores. The whole faςade of the Captain House is characterized by a precious floral frieze of Roman epoch that, starting from the right hand with the open mouth of a wild animal, goes through it all.
Its elegance and its plain decoration made it improperly naming as the “Port Captain premises”. Indeed, that office, as resulting by still visible and existing memorial tablets, was practised by three councilors.

Nowadays the building is place for the Planetary of the Nautical Technical Institute.

The Captain House and the Roman Port in Ancona

Just at the Captain House back there have been recently found out the ruins of the ancient Roman port.

On the top of Vanvitelli Promenade there remained some rooms on two levels that looked out on the street. The continuity with the beneath structures – emerged as the Municipality organized the digs to realize a car park – showed with certainty that they belonged to the Roman port complex.

It has been mounted a walkway to allow digs tours; going along it, on the side looking towards the town, it is visible a piece of the walls protecting the port built up on the II century b. C.

You will see some rooms of Trajan Age (II-III century a. C.) and of rectangular shape with the biggest side perpendicular to the coast. Going ahead, on staggered planes, there you will find rooms belonging to Augustan Age, which were surely used for the construction and the reparation of the ships and of the stores.

Formerly during Roman Epoch, the port area should be limited on its northern side by the monument symbol of Ancona: the arch rising on the port northern pier. That structure, saved over the centuries by earthquakes, the sea violence and by the two world wars, in 115 a. C. was dedicated to the town by the Emperor Trajan that embellished it and enlarged the port, in order to make a logistic basis for its Dacia campaigns.

Roman port complex

Reconstruction of the Roman port

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