Barcelona's Gothic Quarter has plenty of hidden secrets, and today I will share with you one of those that has been best-kept, and it is inside a building on Carrer Paradís. Inside what it was a medieval courtyard, there are four columns from the temple of Augustus that have survived 2000 years and we can still see them all covered in this courtyard that preserves them.
These columns are witnesses of the roman origins of the city that were in the gothic area. The columns are all that remains from the Temple of Augustus built in 1st century BC in Carrer Paradís, which means paradise as once there was a magnificent garden in this location around the temple. The temple was dedicated to the worship of Emperor Augustus, the columns are 9 metres tall and were part of Barcelona's Forum at that time.
The temple was a magnificent rectangular building and corinthian that was 35 metres long and 17,5 metres wide. It had 6 columns in the façade and 11 columns on the side with tho columns created the hall. It was built with stones coming from Montjüic. During some time it was said to be Hercules temple but it was discovered to be Augustus, the emperor of the time.
In the number 10 of this very same street, there was the highest point of the Roman Barcelona, the mount Tàber, a hillock that was 16 meters above sea level.
The two main streets in the Roman Barcelona where Cardus Maximus from North to South (now Llibreteria/Call streets) and the Decumanus Maximus (Now Bisbe/Ciutat streets). Right in the crossing of these two streets, the roman forum was located and is where all buildings related with political, religious and economic power were located.
It is curious that we haven't changed that much from Roman times, the Forum where all important buildings were located is now Plaça Sant Jaime where the city hall and the government are located.
The interesting thing is that these columns arrived until nowadays well preserved and the reason is that we recycled those columns and took advantage of their structure to built news buildings and this how they ended up in a courtyard.
Mondays, from 10am to 2pm. Tuesdays to Saturdays, from 10am to 7pm. Sundays, from 10am to 8pm. January 6th, August 15th, October 12th, November 1st, December 6th and 26th, from 10am to 2pm. January 1st, May 1st, June 24th and December 25th, closed.