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TOLOSA (Toulouse) Haute-Garonne, France.

City in Gallia Narbonensis. The metropolis of the Volcae Tectosages, it was allied with Rome from the conquest in 120-118 B.C. on. In 106 B.C., after a rebellion, it was retaken and pillaged. Tolosa flourished, thanks to the Italian wine trade, from the time of Fonteius and Caesar on; it attained Latin, then colonial status. During the Empire it was well known for its schools of rhetoric and its level of culture, which earned it the surname Palladia. It surrendered to the Visigoths in 418 and became their capital.

The walls, on the right bank of the Garonne, were 3 km long with curtains 2.4 m thick and round towers 10.5 m in diameter. They may go back to the 2d c. A.D., but only the late curtain walls on the edge of the Garonne can still be seen. The town, covering 90 ha, was laid out on a checkerboard plan which can be recognized in the modern streets. Its monuments were buried to a depth of 4 m, and only one has been identified (1868-69): the theater, with a diameter of 90 m. The location of the Capitol, famous for the martyrdom of St. Saturninus, remains uncertain.

The ruins of the amphitheater (arena 59 x 49 m) and the remains of two large public baths, recently excavated, can be seen in the suburban district of Saint-Michel-du-Touch 4 km downstream on the left bank of the Garonne, near a sanctuary built at the junction of the river Touch.


M. Labrousse, Toulouse antique, des origines à l'établissement des Wisigoths (1968)PI. Recent excavations, esp. at Saint-Michel-du-Touch: “Informations,” Gallia 26 (1968) 531-37 and 28 (1970) 410-12; see also A. Baccrabère, “L'aqueduc de la ‘Reine Pédauque’ à Toulouse,” Mém. de la Soc. arch. du Midi de la France 30 (1964) 59-116.

For recent excavations of the wall: M. Labrousse, Gallia 30 (1972) 486-88I; id., “Une forte de l'enceinte gallo-romaine de Toulouse,” Mélanges . . . William Seston (1974) 249-66I; id. & M. Vidal, “Tour et courtine de l'enceinte gallo-romaine de Toulouse dégagies place Saint-Jacques,” Pallas 21 (1974) 99-109; Labrousse in Histoire de Toulouse (1974) 7-47.


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