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H 245 x W 174 mm

148 pages

87 figures (colour throughout)

Published Jan 2023

Archaeopress Archaeology


Paperback: 9781803273426

Digital: 9781803273433

DOI 10.32028/9781803273426

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Roman; Frontiers; LIMES; Persia; Mesopotamia; Forts; Fortifications; Roads; Transport; Singara

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Archaeopress Roman Archaeology 96

The Roman Frontier with Persia in North-Eastern Mesopotamia

Fortresses and Roads around Singara

By Anthony Comfort

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This volume investigates the Roman city of Singara and the fortifications and roads in the surrounding area. The Rome / Persia frontier has been little studied, in part because of the difficulty of access for scholars, but was of great importance because it separated the two major civilisations of the early first millennium CE.



Introduction ;
Aerial photography, satellite imagery and maps ;

Geographical and historical background ;

Forts and fortresses ;
Dating the fortifications ;
The city of Singara ;
The forts at Ain Sinu ;
Alaina ;
Thebeta ;
Qohbol/Ghobal ;
Towards the Khabur ;
al-Han ;
al-Hol ;
Batitas ;
Amostae ;
Thannouris (Tell Tuneynir) ;
Touloul Mougayir and Hirbet Hassan Aga ;
The wall of Jebel Cembe ;
The Khabur valley ;
North of Circesium ;
Tell Ajaja/Arban/Horoba ;
Tell Brak and the Jaghjagh ;
Tell Brak ;
Cizre and Bezabde ;
Castra Maurorum ;
Eski Mosul and the Tigris ;

The roads ;
Roads north of Singara ;
Roads east of Singara ;
Roads to the west of Singara and to the Khabur valley ;
Roads south-east of Singara ;
The northern road from Nisibis east to the Tigris ;

The frontier in north-eastern Mesopotamia ;

Conclusions ;

Bibliography ;

Placename index

About the Author

Anthony Comfort is an independent researcher and an associate member of the Centre for the study of Greek and Roman antiquities at Corpus Christi College, Oxford. He has an MA in archaeology from the University of Leicester and a PhD in archaeology and ancient history from the University of Exeter. Previously he worked as an official of the European Parliament’s secretariat, principally in the Research Department. He is a specialist in the use of satellite imagery for archaeology in the Middle East but has also conducted research on ancient roads in Aquitaine and in Romania. With Michał Marciak he is co-author of How did the Persian king of kings get his wine? The upper Tigris in antiquity (Archaeopress 2018).


'In conclusion, this is a valuable and well executed book. Already with his similar article, ‘Fortresses of the Tur Abdin and the confrontation between Rome and Persia’, Anatolian Studies 67 (2017), 181-229, he had covered the region immediately to the north of that covered here. We may hope that the author continues his investigations in the coming years.' – Geoffrey Greatrex (2023): Bryn Mawr Classical Review