That smalltown charm

The remains of Thugga (or Dougga) are sprinkled across the velvet hills of north-central Tunisia. The site is remote and rural; UNESCO touts it as “the best-preserved Roman small town in North Africa."* 

From a Roman perspective, Thugga rests on the southern fringe of the empire. Before its annexation into the Latin fold, however, it was at the center of of tribal kingdom known as Numidia. Curiously, this name is drawn from the Greek Nomades, or "nomads."** The Numidians are legendary as animal breeders and trainers. The Romans remember them as excellent horsemen.

At its height, the population of Thugga numbered between five and ten thousand persons. 


*For a fuller description of Dougga, have a look at UNESCO's World Heritage page here.

**Pliny the Elder is less gracious. See his comments on the country of the Numidians here.