Plovdiv Is one of the few modern cities with a well-preserved Roman forum with Odeon. The forum was a commercial, administrative and religious center of the ancient city. There were held meetings, debates, festivals, government affairs. In ancient times the town square occupies an area of 20 acres. On the north side was built a complex of public buildings that dominated over the other buildings on the square. Main streets cardo maximus and decumanus maximus crossed in front of the eastern entrance of the complex. In the northern part of the forum complex were located the Odeon, the Building of treasures and the urban Library. There were found inscriptions relating to religious and administrative life of the city and part of the bill for the conduct of gladiator fights. Few towns had libraries during Antiquity. Ancient Philippopolis is one of them. In those days, the libraries were buildings not only for storage of manuscripts and scrolls, but also as a place for education, literary readings, public discussions and speeches.
The Library of Ancient Philippopolis was one of the public buildings forming the northern part of the Forum. It was located west of the Odeon. The way in which the system has been established for better air circulation in the space of the library is interesting. It is well known that moisture distorts the structure of written texts, which at that time were met mostly on papyrus. In the thickness of the brick walls surrounding the library, were built vertical clay pipes that were inserted into a cannel leading to the drain of the Forum.
The Odeon of Philippopolis is situated in the northeast corner of the Forum. The presence of a building with such a function in the central part of the ancient city gives grounds to assume great importance of Philipopolis as a cultural and political center. It is assumed that originally the building was property of the city council, and later had become a theater. In the modern city the Odeon is also used for various cultural events – it is a host of theater performances, concerts, literary readings and even alternative cinema screenings. The Odeon was discovered in 1988. Since 1995 it is a cultural asset of national importance as part of the forum complex.
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