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Second century AD

A private residence - the triconch palace

Butrint had many townhouses and villas. Of these, the so-called Triconch Palace has been examined in great detail. The original townhouse was developed into a great palace around AD 400.

The early house followed a traditional Roman villa building plan - elegant rooms with mosaic floors and wall paintings arranged around a central courtyard, cooled by a fountain. An inscription on the mosaic at the entrance reveals that it was owned by someone of senatorial rank. The conversion of the villa into a grandiose palace after AD 400 involved the expansion of the original courtyard and a new east wing. This housed a luxurious triconch dining room attached to a riverside entrance.

The rising water table soon compelled the owner to abandon the Palace, although the unfinished shell accommodated many generations of fishermen and craftsmen until the late 6th century AD. In the 9th century AD it was occupied again as a temporary market area. Dwellings and possibly a church were built here in the 13th century AD.

triconch palace
  1. Plan of the Triconch Palace
  2. Excavating the Triconch Palace
  3. Reconstruction of the Triconch Palace
Triconch palace reconstruction