Dura-Europos was a Hellenistic, Parthian and Roman border city built on an escarpment 90m above the right bank of the Euphrates river. It is located near the village of Salhiyé, in today’s Syria. It was conquered in 114 AD and finally captured in 165 AD by the Romans (who greatly enlarged it as their easternmost stronghold in Mesopotamia) and destroyed after a Sassanian siege in 257 AD. After it was abandoned, it was covered by sand and mud and disappeared from sight.
Dura-Europos is extremely important for archaeological reasons. As it was abandoned after its conquest in 256–7 AD, nothing was built over it and no later building programs obscured the architectonic features of the ancient city. Its location on the edge of empires made for a co-mingling of cultural traditions, much of which was preserved under the city’s ruins. Some remarkable finds have been brought to light, including numerous temples, wall decorations, inscriptions, military equipment, tombs, and even dramatic evidence of the Sassanian siege during the Imperial Roman period which led to the site’s abandonment. It has since been severely looted by the Islamic State in the ongoing Syrian Civil War – Wikipedia