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Welcome to the Roman Painted House

The Roman Painted House, the finest Roman House on show in Britain, was discovered by Kent Archaeological Rescue Unit. 25 years of excavation across ancient Dover by the Unit have uncovered 50 major structures. The Painted House was the best preserved and is now a major tourist attraction. Built about AD. 200 it formed part of a large mansio or official hotel, for travellers crossing the Channel. It stood outside the great naval fort of the Classis Britannica, but in AD. 270 it was demolished by the Roman Army during the construction of a larger fort. Three of its main rooms were then buried substantially intact under its ramparts.

Unique Roman Wall Paintings

Burial by the Army resulted in the unique survival of over 400 sq. ft. of painted plaster, the most extensive ever found north of the Alps. Above a lower dado, of red or green, visitors can still see an architectural scheme of many coloured panels framed by fluted columns. The columns sit on projecting bases above a stage, producing a clear 3-D effect. Parts of 26 panels survive,each with a motif relating to Bacchus, the Roman God of wine.

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