Museum of Antiquities – Objects and Artifacts from Roman Sites
The Museum of Antiquities is located in the village of Chefchaouen, in Tangier, and is found in what used to be the kitchens of the Sultan’s palace, Dar El Makhzen. Surrounding the museum is a beautiful Andalusian garden where visitors can walk and enjoy the peaceful surroundings. There is also a replica of an ancient necropolis, which is a large and elaborate cemetery that was used by ancient cities.
The museum contains an array of objects and artifacts that come from Roman sites. These Roman sites include Banasa, Lixus, Volubilis and Cotta. They contained a number of mosaics and bronze pieces that can now be viewed at the Museum of Antiquities. One of the better known mosaics that came out of these locations was “The Voyage of Venus.” This mosaic depicts the Goddess Venus sitting on a throne that is situated on a ship. Surrounding the throne are a number of nymphs. The ship can be seen making its way to an unknown destination through clear, blue waters. You will find these fascinating objects in what used to be the Dar El Makhzen palace kitchens.
When you enter the Museum of Antiquities you come across a number of displays that explain the history of Tangier and of the region that surrounds the city. There are also other rooms located on the ground floor that have displays focusing on more specific subjects. One of these rooms is devoted solely to ancient funeral rites that took place during the Roman era. In the room there is a model of a Carthaginian tomb scaled to size.
Tangier was the destination for people wanting adventure, for the rich and for those wanting to avoid paying tax between the 1920’s and 1950’s. Artists and writers, like Tennessee Williams and Truman Capote, also found Tangier a welcome destination where they could accomplish their work in peace. Tangier saw a lot of change in the 1960’s when Morocco took over. With the loss of Tangiers’s duty-free status this led to a decrease in tourism which is only starting to recover and increase in recent years. Tourists are attracted to the walkways lined with palm trees, the sunny beaches and the luxurious resorts.