Mediana archeological site Niš Serbia
Constantine the Great and Mediana Niš
Mediana is one of most important things to point out and visit, when talking about city of Niš. In ancient Serbia were born 17 Roman Empire Emperors. One of most important, if not the most important one, is Constantine The Great (Constantinus Magnus) is born in today’s city of Niš. He certainly deserves the credit for becoming the first ruler of Empire who recognized Christianity as a religion in pagan Rome. That is done with Edict of Milan in year 313. From his time and after, christian people were not prosecuted any more. And the christian religion was protected by him and the Roman Empire. For that reason today he is saint today.He is also famous for building capital Constantinople, today’s Istanbul.
Except this two important things, Constantine The Great built Mediana. It was built in the end of 3rd and begining of 4th century. This was his temporary residence, where his mother Jelena (Helena) was living constantly. For his ruling time, he was at all time traveling for rebuilding Empire. For that reason it’s protected by State of Serbia. At first it had army purpose , with territory larger than today’s city of Niš. And also, at latter time it become residence territory.
About Mediana today
Mediana represents 4000 meters of mosaic tiles. Some of them are covered and some of which can be seen. to here you can come by taxi or city bus. Maybe even on foot, if you have strong will. Taxi drive price depends from where is your starting point, but it wouldn’t be more than 600 RSD (5 euros). Bus prices is 80 Serbian dinars (less that 1 euro). If you decide to go on foot, it’s about 5km from the city center. There is pedestrian road to there. Only 20% of ancient locality is excavated, and the work is being done every day.
The most important place in Mediana is villa with a peristyle. Along with it, there are numerous mosaics. Some of them can be seen. The mosaics that are best preserved and that draw special attention are mosaics with figural mythological representations of the river god Flavius and the head of Medusa. Before you decide to visit Mediana locality see if it’s open. Ticket prices are 300 Serbian dinars (2,5 euros) for all monuments in city of Niš, or for only Mediana 200RSD (1,7 euros). Mediana was deserted and destroyed in 5th century. Some more ancient Roman ruins in city of Niš can be seen all over city, in Fortress in Niš too.
Till the end of the year 2018. it is closed because of the archeological works completion.
Top photo by Intermedichbo – Dr Milorad Dimić, SrbijaCC BY-SA 3.0, bottom photo is by Sindjic, CC BY-SA 4.0 All photos shared from Instagram belong to it’s rightful owners