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MUNIGUA or Municipium Flavium Muniguensium (Mulva) Sevilla, Spain.

In the district of Villanueva del Rio y Minas, ca. 50 km NE of Seville and 15 km NE of Cantillana. Excavations have revealed that there was an Iberian town before the Roman settlement: food and material furnishings have been found in chronological contexts from the 3d to the 1st B.C. During the Romanization of Baetica Munigua developed rapidly; in the mid 1st c. A.D. it received the Latin right from the emperor Vespasian and became a municipium (attested by inscriptions).

Wealth derived from local mines made possible a number of monuments, the most remarkable of which is the terraced sanctuary on the slope of the hill. Reinforced by buttresses at the rear, it has the appearance of a fortress and later became known as the castle of Mulva. The main facade faced E towards the city and access to the sacred precinct was by two separate roadways ascending to a N and a S gate. Thence two symmetrical ramps led to a terrace, from which in turn two stairways ascended to a higher terrace carrying the apse, cella, and dependencies of the sanctuary. The entire construction measures 35.20 by 54.43 m. The plan seems to have been taken from the temple of Fortuna Primigenia at Praeneste in Italy, or perhaps from a Hellenistic structure. Of its cult nothing certain is known, though it may have been that of Fortuna Crescens Augusta or possibly Hercules Augustus, divinities whose names appear on inscriptions from other parts of the city (now in the archaeological museum of Seville with the other finds from Munigua).

Other remains of interest include the foundations of a temple at the base of the hill and a rectangular aedicula with a small exedra in front. Its altar, still in situ, was consecrated by a certain Ferronius to a divinity whose name is indecipherable. In front of the temple were found architrave and frieze blocks, a granite column, two capitals, bits of a base, and part of a dedication to Mercury. The monument dates from the first half of the 2d c. B.C. There are also remains of a large portico of the forum, the municipal baths, a large mausoleum, and the necropolis.

Among the inscriptions on altars, pedestals, cippi, and other blocks are: 1) a bronze tablet recording agreement concluded between a Sextus Curvius Silvinus and the Muniguan authorities, from the first quarter of the 1st c.; 2) a letter from the emperor Titus, on bronze, dictated on the VII Ides of September, A.D. 79, rescinding a fine of 50,000 sesterces imposed by Sempronius Fuscus in a lawsuit between the authorities of Munigua and the collector of municipal taxes, Servilius Pollio. Votive inscriptions, besides those to Fortuna Crescens and Hercules Augustus, refer to Mercury, Bonus Eventus Augustus, Ceres Augusta, Pantheus Augustus, and Dis Pater. Honorary inscriptions mention Vespasian, Titus, Domitian, Nerva, and Hadrian; also for accomplishments on behalf of Munigua, Quintia Flaccina, Lucius Valerius Firmus, and Lucius Aelius Fronto.

The sculptures found in Munigua are of provincial or general Roman style: 1) a head of Hispania, identified by her resemblance to the Hispania on the obverse of a denarius of Aulus Postumius Severus of 82 B.C.; 2) a head of the deity Bonus Eventus and the pedestal for the statue; 3) a headless statue of the nymph Anchyrrhoe, discovered in a nymphaeum added to the baths. There are also numerous Greek, Iberian, Roman, and Arab vase fragments.

Munigua flourished under the emperor Hadrian, but declined towards the close of the 3d c. That the city was in ruins in the 4th c. is attested by the incursion of burials into the center of the town. There are traces of the Visigothic period, but none of the Arab phase.


W. Grünhagen, “Hallazgos epigraficos de la excavación de Munigua,” Actas del VI Congreso Nacional de Arqueología Nacional de Oviedo (1959) 214ff; id., “Die Ausgrabungen der Terrassenheiligtums von Munigua,” Neue Deutsche Ausgrabungen in Mittelmeergebiet und im vorderen Orient (1959) 340ff; id., “Ein Frauenkopf aus Munigua,” Pantheon 19, 2 (1961) 53ff; H. Nesselhauf, “Zwei Bronzeurkunden aus Munigua,” MadrMitt 1 (1960) 142ff; T. Hauschild, “Munigua. Die Doppelgeschossige Halle und die Ädikula im Forumgebiet,” ibid. 9, 2 (1968) 263-88PI; id., “Excavaciones en Munigua en el año 1966,” Actas del X Congreso Nacional de Arqueología, Mahón 1967 (1969) 400ff; F. Collantes de Terán & C. Fernández-Chicarro, Epigrafía de Mulva (in press).


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