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Ulpia Oescus: Frieze-architrave at the Temple of Juno

Ulpia Oescus, the only city in Lower Moesia to become of a Roman colonia, included temples of the principal Roman deities. On the north end of the Forum were discovered the foundations and parts of the walls of three independent temples dedicated to the Capitolian trinity of Juno, Jupiter, and Minerva, central to the Imperial cult.

Built in the Corinthian style during the earlier part of the reign of Hadrian (AD 117-138), the Imperial temple complex showed typical sculptural elements of the period. The temple to Jupiter Optimus Maximus was in the middle, while the well decorated temple to Juno (fig.1) was at the east, and the temple to Minerva lay on the western side.

[Fig.1: Frieze-architrave from the temple of Juno at Oescus, showing relief carvings of bucrania or bull's heads and wreaths (Ivanov and Ivanov 1998).]

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