Lebanon is a country that has more than 5,000 years of history. Last year, National Geographic declared that Lebanon is one of the world’s oldest countries.
The Temple of Bacchus is one of the largest Roman temple ruins in the world. This richly and abundantly decorated monument is located in Baalbek which is a UNESCO World Heritage site along with Tyre, Anjar, the Cedars of God, Qadisha Valley, and Byblos.
This temple is dedicated to Bacchus, the god of wine, grape harvest, fertility, and theater. Bacchus is the Roman name for the Greek god Dionysius.
It is so well preserved that carvings of lions, bulls, and eagles are still visible. It is believed that the temple was constructed between 150 A.D. and 250 A.D.
Forty-two breathtaking Corinthian columns, nineteen of which remain upright in position, support a richly carved entablature. This monument is a piece of art!
The temple was commissioned by the Roman Emperor Antoninus Pius. The architect is unknown.
The Near East earthquakes of 1759 damaged the area and the temple. However, people were quick to save it from demolition. Many of the columns of the temples in Baalbek were toppled.
Baalbek was named an UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1984. The complex of temples at Baalbek was the most famous sanctuary in the Roman world.
Baalbek is also home to the temples of Jupiter, Venus and Mercury, and the Odeon. The latter is a building used for musical performances and poetry competitions.
This majestic monument is one of the most impressive testimonies of the Roman architecture of the imperial period.
The Temple of Bacchus perfectly displays the full the power and wealth of the Roman Empire. Visit it soon!