Plasmolen – Roman villa
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Plasmolen
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Plasmolen – Roman villa

Plasmolen – Roman villa
Plasmolen – Roman villa

The villa in Plasmolen is 84 metres wide, making it the largest Roman dwelling in the Netherlands and putting it among the top-ten largest villas of North-West Europe.

Luxury and comfort
The villa was built for luxury and comfort: underfloor heating, a special bath house, various rooms, wall-paintings, mosaic floors and a terraced garden. Whoever owned the house must have been extremely important, most likely a high-ranking officer or magistrate from Nijmegen. He must have spent a lot of time in the long, open gallery, soaking up the midday sun and enjoying the splendid view. He would have received his guests in the large, central space that was two storeys high and the enormous height of the reception hall was probably intended to impress the visitors.

Archaeological research and treasure hunters
The site of the villa was examined for the first time by archaeologists during the 1930s. They were able to establish its contours by digging a number of test trenches. In the 1990s, treasure hunters with metal detectors churned up the grounds of the villa to such and extent that the remains of the residence were in danger of disappearing. Swift action was required and the trenches of the old excavation were reopened, so that the old discoveries could be compared with new finds. The terrain was then covered with wire netting and a one-metre thick layer of soil to foil the metal detectors and protect the remains.

Impression of Roman architecture
The grounds on which the villa is located belongs to the Dutch Society for the Preservation of Nature (Natuurmonumenten). A large-scale reconstruction would have attracted too many tourists which would have been detrimental to the peace and quiet in the forest. So conservationist decided to mark out the contours of the villa in its breadth, depth and height. This gives visitors a good impression of just how big the building was, so much so that the Roman architecture almost comes to life.

Plasmolen – Roman villa
Plasmolen – Roman villa

Romeinse Villa

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