The site has artifacts with markings that date to the Roman era.
By Rahma Ouled Cherif
Rabat – The Ministry of Culture and Communication has announced the publication of a guide for the Rirha historical site in northern Morocco. The guide was published under the title “Rirha: Ancient and Medieval Site of Morocco” by Laurent Callegarin, Mohamed Kbiri Alaoui, Abdelfattah Ichkhakh, and Jean-Claude Roux.
The site of Rirha, which, according to the guide, has been on the list of Moroccan cultural heritage pieces since 2001, sits on the right bank of the Oued Beht river located in the Gharb plain between Rabat and Fez.
This site, which was first discovered in 1919, was excavated by Louis Chatelain but the results of the discovered artifacts were only published in a limited number of scientific magazines. Chatelain conveyed that the land was very likely a military site because it measures exactly 120,000 square meters.
The Rirha site has four layers: The oldest layers date back to the fourth century B.C. and the first century B.C., before the Roman era. The other two layers were built during the Roman era, in the first century and third century A.D.
This publication is the result of a 2004 excavation by Ichkhakh and his colleagues, a scientific team of Moroccan and Algerian members and French and Spanish researchers.
It also highlights the importance of historical sites and archaeological research that have attracted the interest of many Moroccan and foreign scholars according to the ministry’s statement.
The guide is the product of combined efforts by the scholars to uncover signs of early settlements in Morocco. Ichkhakh and his colleagues discovered historical artifacts, including markings that can be traced back to the Roman era.
It is the result of a series of efforts made by the Ministry of Culture and Communication, under the supervision of the National Institute of Archeology and Heritage, along with the Department of Cooperation and Cultural Action of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The ministry also appointed specialists of various nationalities and scientific fields, including earthen architecture, excavation, and restoration of painted and mosaic objects to preserve the historical site.