Northern Gate of Rusafa
Rusafa, Syria
The northern gate of Rusafa was the city's main entrance, located on the north side of the walled rectangular enclosure. The gate takes the form of three ornate doorways cut into the inner city wall. These open onto a walled forecourt to the north, projecting outward from the line of the city walls. The gate is dated on stylistic grounds to the early sixth century.

The inner wall of the gate pierced with the three ornate doors has a dramatic elevation. The central door is larger than the two flanking it and each door is flanked by two monumental columns with Corinthian capitals for a total of six columns total. Surmounting these columns is a blind arcade formed by three wider arches over the three doors and two smaller arches covering the spaces between doors. The arches are formed by a cornice carved with vine scrolls of a style similar to that seen in other Byzantine-period structures at northern Mesopotamian sites. Surmounting the blind arcade are four sculptures in the form of animal busts, including lions and bulls. 


Thilo Ulbert"Rusafa." Grove Art OnlineOxford Art OnlineOxford University Press, accessed April 21, 2017
Rusafa, Syria
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Associated Names
early 6th century AD
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