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Roman Aurelian Way

Voie Aurélienne - Provence Beyond

The Aurelian Way (Voie Aurélienne), running from Rome to Arles, was built during the reign of Aurelius (214-275), emperor of Rome from 270 to 275. (Also known for capturing Palmyra in 273, and reasserting Roman authority.)

Its route took it past Genoa, Cimiez (Nice), Antibes, Frejus, Ampus, Tourtour, Saint Maximin-la-Sainte-Baume, Aix-en-Provence, Salon-de-Provence.

This road was over 2.5 m wide, paved, cambered, and put down on a cement base. It used engineering extensively, including many bridges, to take the most direct route rather than following geographic contours.

The Aurelian Way was one of the most important roads in the Roman empire. One of the features of this modern highway was a series of milestones marking each Roman mile (1478 m) along its full distance. (France continues the tradition to this day with its "bornes" (milliaires) that mark the kilometer distances between towns.) Another "modern" feature was raised pavements, or sidewalks, for use by pedestrians and for mounting blocks.

Now over 1700 years old, parts of the Aurelian Way are still in use. There's a long section of it just east of Tourtour in the Var. The RN7 (route national) between Aix and Nice follows much of the same route.

West of Salon-de-Provence the Aurelian Way passed by the Archimbaud farm where the "Archimbaud" milestone was found. This is about 14 km west of Salon-de-Provence [Aurelian Way Salon-W Area Map ].

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