EASME/EMFF/2017/1.2.1.12 – Sustainable Blue Economy

Co-funded by the EMFF programme of the European Union

Caesarea /Israel (UCH)

Caesarea the Archaeological site and National Park  located about fifty kilometers north of modern Tel Aviv.  In 22 BCE Herod the Great, King of Judaea (from 40 to 4 BCE), commissioned the construction of large city and all-weather harbor named Caesarea Maritima. In 22 BCE  Herod the Great, King of Judaea (from 40 to 4 BCE), commissioned the construction of large city and all-weather harbor named Caesarea Maritima, partly on the ruins of Strato’s Tower. In only thirteen years (22-10/9 BCE) Herod’s architects and engineers laid out streets on an up to date grid plan and designed magnificent temples, theaters and public squares- the typical components of a classical city.  Thousands of workmen, slaves and paid laborers who came from the Roman Empire cities to work in Caesarea on marble public buildings (mosaic floors, fresco etc.). Their most impressive project, however, was a vast harbor complex. This new port, the earliest known to be constructed of three-standing breakwaters in the open sea, and to use Roman hydraulic concrete technology on large scale (a mixture of lime, volcanic ash and aggregate). The addition of volcanic ash; “Pozzolana”, served to increase the strength of the concrete and allowed it to set while in contact with sea water. When completed in 15 BCE, Sebastos was one of the largest artificial Roman port in the Mediterranean (enclose an area of roughly 200,000 square meters) and became a thriving center for the trade and transshipment of goods between the Middle East and overland transport of goods from the Indian Ocean to Rome.  Herod dedicated the harbor and the city to the first Roman emperor, Caesar Augustus, revealing his ambition to be known as a faithful supporter of Rome and its ruler. The name Caesarea came from the family name of Caesars; Sebastos, the harbor’s special name, is the Greek rending of Augustus. Caesarea today is National Park and popular site for local and international sports Divers .