Europos Dura


(CC Heretiq)*
Remains of the Temple of Adonis (Europos Dura) in August 2005

Europos Dura was a regional capital in the centre of the Seleucid Empire that became an advanced post for the shifting borders of the Roman and Parthian Empires. Its population was marked by Greco-Roman and Persian influences, though the Semitic traditions of the majority of the population quickly became dominant. The fact that the area has never been occupied since it was abandoned is a remarkable testimony regarding the evolution of the East Mesopotamian region over the five centuries since Alexander’s conquest.   

  • October 2014: the site has been used by armed groups as a shelter against aerial bombardments.
  • Systematic acts of looting, vandalism, and excavations using heavy machinery (holes 3 meters deep) have led to extensive destruction of the site. Attempts by the local community to put an end to this excavation have failed.
  • April 2013, the number of holes resulting from illegal excavations amounted to 300 throughout the site. The excavations in the archaeological of Dura Europos have sabotaged an area exceeding 80% of the archaeological Tell.
  • Stones within the sector of the Temple of Bel have been stolen and transferred outside the site.

* For more information on the use of the photo, click here.