Discovering Roman Roads


The roads : List of roads>Via Appia>Segment 29


Via Appia        Segment 29        from km 266,4 to km 297,5

Mirabella Pass (Aeclanum) - La Toppa Plain (Subromula)


The itinerary we will follow now, that develops on the divide of the rivers Ufita and Ofanto, has been recommended by q11 - Prof. Lorenzo Quilici in his text "Via Appia - dalla pianura pontina a Brindisi", even though other ones have been proposed by other researchers.

The excavations made in Mirabella Pass (Aeclanum) brought to light a small village that seem to be something more complex than just a simple Statio(**).

As from Mirabella Pass (Aeclanum) the road SS 303 climbs over a deep drop (350 m) and keeps then the same level for many kilometres, it can be reasonably assumed that via Appia climbed this highly steep drop, but no traces can actually witness where it used to pass.

There are neither traces nor historical finds in this segment, except than in the village of Frigento (*) where we can what is left from a roman cistern and a villa.

Before reaching La Toppa plain, probably the ancient statio Subromula, there is the crossroads for La Mefite (*).

There, a volcanic spring created a small lake that emanates poisonous gasses and is cited in the classical texts as being the Entrance to the Hells.

It is where the temple of the Goddess Mefite was located.


(*) Aeclanum, Frigento (1 km) and La Mefite (2 km) are worth a visit.

(**) See Statio in glossary