Throughout the annals of history, communities have commonly been founded in close proximity to natural water sources, often rivers, in order to secure a consistent and dependable water source.
However, Ancient Romans devised a system for transporting water from its source to their cities.
The Roman aqueducts employed their robust concrete, frequently designed in distinctive arch formations, for the conveyance of water via lead pipes from rivers and freshwater lakes directly into urban hubs.
These impressive engineering achievements drew inspiration from channel designs in Ancient Egypt and India, but the Romans expanded upon and further developed the concept.
While iconic aqueduct bridges still exist in various parts of Europe, they represent only a small portion of the extensive aqueduct network spanning thousands of miles.
Rome had an impressive total of 11 aqueduct systems dedicated to supplying fresh water to the capital of the empire.
These aqueducts sourced water from locations as far as 57 miles away.
One of these systems, Aqua Virgo, constructed by Agrippa in 19 BC, spans 21 miles and remains functional in the city of Rome to this day.
The invention of a reliable water supply was groundbreaking during its time, and we still draw from Ancient Rome’s innovative achievements every time we turn on a faucet.
Several aqueducts served Rome, each with its own unique name and source. One of the most famous of these aqueducts is the Aqua Claudia, completed in 52 CE by Emperor Claudius.