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URBA (Orbe) Vaud, Switzerland.

Vicus and villa 10 km SW of Yverdon. (Mentioned in It. Ant. 348.3 and Not. Gall. 9.6.) The settlement developed around a bridge and relay station on the Orbe, where the roads from Lousonna and Eburodunum joined to cross the Jura towards Ariolica and Vesontio.

Little is known of the vicus, which lies beneath the mediaeval town, but 2.5 km to the NE at Boscéaz there is a villa with outbuildings constructed in the 1st c. A.D. It was enlarged and remodeled several times, and destroyed during the incursions of the Alamanni ca. A.D. 270. Parts of it were inhabited, however, into the 4th c., and eight mosaics (four geometric, four figured) of ca. A.D. 200-230) are preserved in situ in the main building and baths.


F. Staehelin, Die Schweiz in römischer Zeit (3d ed. 1948) 357-58, 623; V. von Gonzenbach, Die römischen Mosaiken der Schweiz (1961) 173-99PI; id., “Die römische villa von Orbe und ihre Mosaiken,” Arch. Führer der Schweiz 3 (1974)MPI.


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