Sites & cities that bear the name of Capidava


Today in : Romania
First trace of activity : ca. 5th century B.C.E
Last trace of activity : 1036 C.E
Recorded names : Cappidava, Capidapa, Kapidaua, Calidava, Calidaua, Topalu

Description : Capidava (Kapidaua, Cappidava, Capidapa, Calidava, Calidaua) was an important Geto-Dacian center on the right bank of the Danube. After the Roman conquest, it became a civil and military center, as part of the province of Moesia Inferior (later Scythia Minor), modern Dobruja. It is located in the village with the same name, Capidava, in Constanţa County, Romania. Based on the literary evidences that confirms both the existence and the importance of Capidava and also based on the archaeological pre-Roman evidences, some take into consideration the hypothesis that the Getic fortress might have been razed to the ground through the building of the Roman castra itself Historians such as Suceveanu, Miclea and Florescu consider that the pre-Roman indigenous Getic settlement of Capidava, located at some distance from the future Roman fortress gave the name Capidava. On the site of modern Capidava village, there is a La Tène settlement of Geto-Dacian culture, dated to 5th century - 2nd century BC. At 4 km south of Capidava, on the bank of Zaval Valley, there are strong Geto-Dacian traces, dating back to the second period of Iron Age. Beside the Geto-Dacian ceramic, fragments of Roman vases are scattered here and there. The early 20th century Romanian archaeologist and historian Vasile Pârvan identified the Geto-Dacian Capidava as the center of power for the Getic king Dapyx, within a territorium Capidavense. Cassius Dio's Historia Romana makes mention of the retreat of Dapyx into his fort after his defeat in 28 BC at the hand of Marcus Licinius Crassus. Pârvan identified the fort mentioned by Dio with future Roman fort Capidava, stating the locations described in the ancient source fit well with the modern location. Pârvan identified the administrative form of Capidava as an old Dacian pagus, based on a local inscription. Following Pârvan's research and view, many historians supposed a pre-Roman dwelling in the area of the Roman fort. The geographic position would have explained the significance of the local settlement, a place that made possible the communication between the Dacians in Dobruja and those in the Wallachian Plain. However, as of the 2000s (decade), the Getic fort was not archaeologically identified. Moreover, in the cemetery excavated at Capidava only graves of specific Roman provincial type were found. The archaeological material of the 2nd century AD is mixed in character: Geto-Dacian and Roman. The funeral stone of the Cocceius family from Capidava, dated Roman epoch, has a relief of the Thracian rider. Representation of the ox drawn plow of Getians had been preserved on the so-called "Quadratus grave" discovered at Capidava.

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