Sunday, July 09, 2006

Trophée des Alpes

We went to the mediaeval village of La Turbie the other day to see the Trophée des Alpes [aka Trophée d'Auguste]

The immense monument was originally built by the Romans in honour of Emperor Augustus and to celebrate the victory over 44 Celto-Ligurian tribes who lived in the area

A huge carved inscription gives the names of the tribes [reconstructed now ]- Pliny the Elder had written down the full inscription which meant that it could be recreated using the original fragments filled in with modern stonework.

Its hard to tell from the photos how immense the monument is untill you notice the tiny figure on the right adjacent to the stone columns.

I had to piece the inscription together from 4 photos because its so huge but its not very readable at this size- however these are the tribal names - which explains why its such a huge monument
Tr{i}umpilini, Camunni, Venostes, Vennonetes, Isarci, Breuni, Genaunes,
Focunates, the four nations of the Vindelici, the Consuanetes,
Rucinates, Licates, Catenates, Ambisontes, Rugusci, Suanetes,
Calucones, Brixenetes, Leponti, Uberi, Natuates, Seduni, Varagri,
Salassi, Acitavones, Medulli, Ucenni, Caturiges, Brigiani, Sogionti(i),
Brodionti(i), Nemaloni, Edenates, esubiani, Veamini, Galli taetri, Ulatti, Ecdini, Vergunni, Egui, Turi, Nematuri, Oratelli, Nerusi, Velauni, Suetri.

Another inscription found in Turkey called the Res Gestae Divi Augusti [Deeds of the Divine Augustus] written as if by Augustus himself, says "I brought peace to the Alps from the region which is near the Adriatic Sea to the Tuscan, with no unjust war waged against any nation."
My kids are the small figures on the monument - you can climb up some stone stairs on to a viewing platform and then the continue up some metal stairs to a higher viewpoint.

My kids were shouting 'don't look mum' because they know how bad i am with heights -however i did manage [for one] to climb up without freezing with terror.

This is the other side of the monument looking up at my kids who have climbed to the higher viewpoint.

The views are spectacular -you can see all along the coast and the mountains and Monaco and Monte Carlo far below. However, a storm was gathering out at sea so a lot of the landscape photos look hazy and dark depending on the direction. The storm clouds got thicker and thicker as the day went on and by the time we got back to Nice in the late afternoon, there was a massive thunderstom with torrential rain.

This is one of the stone pillars

In Roman times the monument was not fortified- it was meant to be a visible sign of Rome's power and a reminder to the vanquished tribes.

The grounds of the monument were very attractive to wild life as there were lots of trees and grasses and flowers. I will post some of the nature photos i took another time, however, here are some snails that i spotted at the top viewing platform hidden in rock crevices.

They are conical shelled snails and probably Cochlicella acuta aka Pointed snail

There were lots and lots of these pointed snails nestled in crevices despite there being little obvious food or moisture. Maybe they just like highrise life.

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frank h said...

thank you very much for sharing your experiences and these beautiful images , alison

its a pleasure coming here to your blog!

natural attrill said...

Hello Alison, just started blogging and thought I would come and say hello, you have some wonderful photos here! Penny.