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ST-ULRICH Moselle, France.

In the commune of Dolving 4 km NW of Sarrebourg. A Gallo-Roman estate, the greater part of which is in the territory of Dolving, the rest in that of Haut-Clocher.

A large villa was excavated in 1894-97; 117 rooms were counted but the total is higher, as excavation was not complete. The villa consists of six sections, four living areas, one for baths, and an outlying building. The earlier plan is related to certain Pompeian villas; toward the Flavian period a new, more open construction called provincial was added on the S to the original. Deep excavations since 1968 have yielded pottery indicating a first settlement in the late Julio-Claudian period. Later changes included raising the level of the baths more than 1.8 m, probably towards the end of the 3d c.

The St-Ulrich estate was discovered only about 20 years ago, but 32 buildings have been found, besides the villa. In the W the remains appear to be covered with alluvial deposits; the excavated section, mostly in the NE, covers some 100 ha. The St-Ulrich estate may be compared with that of Anthée, in the Belgian province of Namur, but the great villa of St-Ulrich stands on the W boundary, that at Anthée on the E. The buildings are arranged in a more orderly fashion at Anthée, aligned on two parallel lines starting from the villa, while those at St-Ulrich are scattered in a fan E of the main house. The Anthée estate was more or less industrial in character, while that of St-Ulrich was more occupied with agriculture and crafts: its purpose was to provide everything necessary to the life of the villa.

Three sites have been excavated since 1963. The first is a small villa 16 m square with two hypocausts, which apparently was occupied at three different periods. The second is a small native fanum dedicated to some god of the springs, a rectangular sanctuary (8.15 x 6.77 m) with one surrounding wall, also rectangular. The cella was simply a small shelter with a roof supported by four wooden posts. A votive gift had been placed in each post-hole (a coin or the skeleton of a small animal). Most of the potsherds found there come from ewers. Finally, a rectangular structure (24.7 x 10.5 m) was excavated; it, too, showed signs of three periods of occupation, the first two given over to agriculture, the last to crafts (forge). Pottery shows that the first stage dates from the late Julio-Claudian period. The building was abandoned in the 4th c., as was the small villa; the fanum was apparently used only in Trajan's reign and part of Hadrian's (coins and pottery).

The Sarrebourg museum has an archaeological collection.


K. Wichmann, “Die römische Villa in St. Ulrich bei Saarburg i.L.,” Annuaire de la Sté d'Histoire et d'Archéologie de Lorraine 10 (1898) 171ff; M. Lutz, “La région de la Haute-Sarre à l'époque romaine,” ibid. 65 (1966) 14ff.


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