CANATHA, ancient Arabia, modern Syria.
COORDINATES: 32º45’21.99” N // 36º37’08.25” ETIPOLOGY : Roman cult theatre. Not urban ¿?
DATE: Second half II A.D.
CAPACITY: 800 ¿? spectators.
CAVEA: Rest on natural hill, carved into the rock.
. Diameter. Facing west. Ima cavea: 3 cunei and 9 steps survives, but it was bigger. 46 m
. diameter. Paved in cut stones. 12 m
STAGE BUILDING: The proscaenium shows three curved and two rectangular niches.
LOCATION: Close to the nymphaeum, in the eastern banks of the wadi. Modern Qanawât is 5 klm north-east of Suwayda.
BEDSIDE TABLE: Sear, Frank; “Roman theatres: an architectural study”. Oxford University Press, 2006. // Ciancio Rossetto, Paola; Giuseppina Pisani Sartorio (eds); Teatri Greci e Romani: alle origini del linguaggio rappresentato. Rome: SEAT, 1995. // Segal, Arthur; “Theatres in Roman Palestine & provincia Arabia”. New York, E.J. Brill., 1995. // Burns, Ross; “Monuments of Syria”. London, I.B. Tauris, 1999. // Abou Assaf, Ali; “The archaeology of Jebel Hauran”. Damascus, Sidawi, 1998.
OUT OF PRINT: Marcus Ulpius Lysias Icarius paid 10.000 denarii fot its construction. The building was never covered so we can not say it is really an odeon. Probably a typical west cult theatre. Canatha is in the south of Syria, in the Hauran plain; in a very short distances you can visit six ancient theatres. Hauran plain reminds me to Castilla, where evenings seems to be caught in the sun. Is etched in my mind, that fire sunset, from Hauran to Damascus, eating spinach pie and blaklava.