center of Getaean origin on the right bank of the Danube. It commands a shallow spot in the river which
served as an important ford for merchandise for the
Wallachian plain from Histria and the other colonies.
Opposite Carsium, on the left side of the Danube, one of
the river's major tributaries, the Jalomitza, crosses the
plain and becomes an important commercial artery for
the Getaean settlements located in this area.
Carsium became part of the limes before the time of
Trajan and was closely linked to the other military garrisons, especially Capidava and Troesmis, by means of
the great Roman road that flanked the right bank of the
river. The importance of this artery may be judged by
the numerous times it was repaired between the reigns
of Marcus Aurelius and Diocletian.
Already from the Republican period, together with the
other centers along the right bank of the Danube, Carsium became part of the governmental formation of the
Odrysae, and more precisely of the Roman territorial
organization named the Ripa Thraciae. A real castrum
was built at Carsium in 103 during the Dacian wars,
and it became part of the broader defensive system of
the limes. From the age of Trajan until the fall of the
Roman Empire, Carsium was continually reinforced, especially by troops of cavalry for rapid attack against the
Daco-Getae who infiltrated Scythia Minor from the
Wallachian plain or from Moldavia. These raids into
the barbaricum were planned to end this pressure on
Scythia Minor. That is to say, on the left bank of the
Danube across from Carsium was a propugnaculum
where a numerus Surorum sagittarium (CIL
quartered. Following this reinforcement of the garrison,
small agricultural settlements such as vicus Verobrittiani,
or later vicus Carporum, sprang up in the vicinity.
Nothing is known either of the form of the castrum
or of the arrangement of its monuments. Architectural
elements of several monuments from the Imperial age
have been recognized however; and a bronze mask was
found that is a copy of a Hellenistic original.
The last precise notice of Carsium appeared at the
time of Diocletian when the Milites Scythici were quartered there.
BIBLIOGRAPHY. R. Vulpe, Histoire ancienne de la Dobroudja
(1938) passim; id. & I. Barnea, Din istoria Dobrogei
, II (1968) passim.