Definitions

appian way

appian way

[ap-ee-uhn]

The Appian Way, or Via Appia, was once one of the most important roads in the world, running from Rome to the port city of Brindisi. It provided the main highway from Rome to seaports of southeastern Italy, Greece and the eastern Mediterranean. Made of gravel topped with interlocking stones, it provided a flat surface for its travelers. It helped the Roman army move military supplies quickly and helped the Roman army attain victories. Many people built tombs along the roads leading out of Rome since people could not bury their dead in the city. Many of these monuments are still seen today, including the tomb of Cecilia Metella, the wife of one of the generals of Julius Caesar. Early Christians buried their dead and held secret church services in tunnels and catacombs under the Appian Way. Horace and Statius referred to the road as the "queen of long-distance roads."

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