Prefectoral decree of 21st August 1807

The Emergence of a Monument

"Whereas the decree by the Council of State made on August 28, 1786, recognizes that the Arena located in the City of Nismes is one of the most beautiful Roman monuments that still remains; that it was built to provide the arts and public a famous edifice that could escape from the ravages of wars and time; but whose ancient magnificence has been dishonored by the vile constructions erected there during the barbarian centuries; that by renovating it the City of Nismes would draw the advantage of avoiding the deadly diseases that often spread due to the insalubrious hovels that obstruct both the interior and the exterior of the Arena ...and that it was ordered that … the Arena of the aforementioned City of Nismes would be renovated and the houses demolished …. that clutter and dishonor it and are an insult to a monument worthy of being venerated by all friends of the arts and even of public admiration; that it is therefore important to take the necessary measures to put an end to these offences ..."

(Municipal Archives © City of Nîmes)

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