Ancient Roman tavern discovered in southern France

22nd February, 2016
Archaeologists have discovered the remains of what was possibly a Roman tavern in the southern French port city of Lattara, a fascinating find that shines even more light on the rich history of France’s Mediterranean coast. The communal eating and drinking place is believed to date back to anywhere between 125 and 75 BC, and helps to chart the changing economy of the thriving city at the time.

Historically, the local residents earned their livelihood through farming, though following the invasion of the Romans in the late second century BC, the region’s economy saw a change which included the establishment of places to eat outside of the home. Initially, the archaeologists believed that what they had come across was an ancient Roman bakery, as remains of three ovens used for baking bread were found, though benches lining the walls and a charcoal-burning fireplace in the middle of the floor found in another room led the researchers to believe that it was also a place where people sat and ate. Drinking bowls as well as meat and fish bones were found scattered on the floor in another room, hinting that this was a place which not only served food but drink, too.

Dubbed as one of the first of its kind to be discovered in the region, the dining complex is an important discovery marking the social change in the region following the Roman invasion. The drinking bowls were also imported from Italy, connecting the tavern with the Roman people who took over the region. The researchers said: "Not only is the tavern the earliest of its kind in the region, it also serves as an invaluable indicator of the changing social and economic infrastructure of the settlement and its inhabitants following the Roman conquest of Mediterranean Gaul in the late second century BC.”

Unearth for yourself some of France’s truly fascinating history, with several locations near our luxury villas in France offering sites and landmarks into medieval, ancient and even prehistoric history, as well as a host of great attractions, towns and cities to explore.

You may also enjoy reading:

Image: Daniel Villafruela, available under Creative Commons