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When the surface structure of the land was unable to accommodate underground tunnels, such as valleys and rivers, the Roman aqueducts were built above ground so that nothing, neither mountain, nor water dictated their path.
Three such arches, visible to the general traveler in Rome are the Porta Maggiore, the Arch of Drusus, and Nero’s Aqueduct.The Porta Maggiore carried water from the springs in the upper valley of Anio and reached Rome after traveling 68 kilometers.This aqueduct alone provided the city with 2/3 of its water supply.The ducts were left in disrepair until the Renaissance when many were restored.At approximately the height of Rome’s population, 1 million inhabitants, the ducts provided up to 1 cubic meter of water for every person. Some emperors were especially interested in the engineering of these structures and their ability to bring water to the city and growing provinces of the empire. He is associated with the Porta Maggiore, a double arched aqueduct still standing over two important ancient roads, the Via Praenestina and the Via Labicana.The Roman legions were also required to build and dig in areas far from the city of Rome itself as they proceeded to conquer and inhabit further regions of the empire.
Towards the last days of the Roman Empire many of these Aqueducts were destroyed by invading German tribes as they sought to cut off Rome’s water supplies.
The Cathedral of Saint Andrew compares to the Notre-Dame in Paris in its grandeur and features an impressive facade with sculptures of the Last Supper, the Ascension, and Christ in Majesty.
Interestingly, the western front side of the cathedral is completely unadorned, since it was originally too close to the old town walls.
The Roman aqueducts stand today, more than two thousand years later, as a testament to the engineering genius of the ancient Romans.
These massive structures not only boggle the human mind as to how they were constructed but their function and reliability are still a modern marvel.
The entire system relied on various gradients and gravity to maintain a continuous flow.