Mérida is an astonishing place to visit, not least because so much of the town is made of marble. The main reason people visit is because it contains 29 World Heritage sites listed in 1993 as the "Archaeological Ensemble of Mérida"
The description from the UNESCO site says:-
The colony of Augusta Emerita, which became present-day Mérida in Estremadura, was founded in 25 B.C. at the end of the Spanish Campaign and was the capital of Lusitania. The well-preserved remains of the old city include, in particular, a large bridge over the Guadiana, an amphitheatre, a theatre, a vast circus and an exceptional water-supply system. It is an excellent example of a provincial Roman capital during the empire and in the years afterwards.
The Museum is included in this list, and is home to a wealth of delights. It's a huge place with displays on three floors, and is welcomingly cool on a hot day (around 40C when we were there). We allowed ourselves just over two hours, it was only enough time to just walk around and gawp in amazement and take a few pictures, but nowhere near long enough to really take it all in or to try to retrace our steps to take a second, longer, look at any of the wondeful items on display.
The design seems to mirror Roman construction methods, to my eyes the arches are similar to those of both the amphitheatre and the theatre (pictures another day). The ceilings are high because there are several massive mosaics fastened to the walls - and they need that much space.
I managed to find this description of the Museum, and learned that it had won a prize
The plaques and statues on the end wall are the original sculptures from what's referred to as the "Temple of Diana", now kept indoors for safety/posterity.
If you'd like to know more about this amazing Museum and some of its' priceless and awe-inspiring exhibits please take a look the text accompanying other pictures I've uploaded, they can be found - here -.
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