Apollodorus of Damascus

Trajan's Market


Apollodorus of Damascus, Roman architect and engineer, fl. late 1st to early 2d cent. A.D., b. Syria. Apollodorus was responsible for nearly all buildings designed under the emperor Trajan, for whom he was official architect. Known for his use of symmetry and axial organization, Apollodorus produced his greatest achievement in the Forum of Trajan and Trajan's Column. His treatise Engines of War survives.


Architecture Work

Apollodorus was a favourite of Trajan, for whom he constructed Trajan's Bridge over the Danube, for the 105-106 campaign in Dacia.

He also designed the Forum Trajanum and Trajan's Column within the city of Rome, beside several smaller projects. Apollodorus also designed the triumphal arches of Trajan at Beneventum and Ancona. He is widely credited as the architect of the third iteration of the Pantheon, and cited as the builder of the Alconétar Bridge in Spain. In 106 he also completed or restored the odeon begun in the Campus Martius under Domitian.

Trajan's Column, in the center of the Forum, is celebrated as being the first triumphal monument of its kind. On the accession of Hadrian, whom he had offended by ridiculing his performances as architect and artist, Apollodorus was banished and, shortly afterwards, being charged with imaginary crimes, put to death. He also wrote a treatise on Siege Engines (Πολιορκητικά), addressed to an unnamed emperor, likely Trajan.









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