Trajan's Wall

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Trajan's Wall (Valul lui Traian in Romanian) is a complex of valla in Eastern Europe: in Romania, Moldova and Ukraine.

Contrary to the name and popular belief, the ramparts were not built by Romans during Trajan's reign.


There are three valla in Romania, in south-central Dobruja, extending from the Danube to the Black Sea coast, built most probably by Byzantines between the 10th and the 11th century, during the reign of John I Tzimisces and Basil II.

The oldest and smallest vallum, the little earth wall, is 61 km in length, extending from Cetatea Pătulului on the Danube to Constanţa on the sea coast. Entirely made of earth, it has no defensive constructions built on it, but has a moat on its southern side.

The second vallum, the large earth wall, 54 km in length, overlaps the smaller one on some sections. It begins on the Danube, follows the Carasu Valley and ends at Palas, west of Constanţa. Its average height is 3.5 m, and it has moats on both sides. On it are built 63 fortifications: 35 larger (castra), and 28 smaller (castella). The average distance between fortifications is 1 km. Built during John Tzimisces's reign and destroyed by migratory population, it was reconstructed at a later time.The last vallum to be built, the stone wall, is also made of earth, but has a stone wall on its crest. It has 59 km in length, extending from south of Axiopolis to the Black Sea coast, at a point 75 m south of the little earth wall. The agger is about 1.5 m in height, while...
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