A Unique Tour of Ancient Mila

Many countries around the world have ancient cities that are known not for their entertainment qualities or activities but because they have become significant as part of their heritage and a noteworthy historical site. For Algeria, Mila is just such a town. Mila, also spelled Milah, has a rich and fascinating history, which is rarely explored. Its ability to remain out of the spotlight for many years has led to the preservation of most of its buildings, fortifications and homes.

Originally known as Mileum (Milevum), the town of Mila formed part of the extensive Roman Empire. The Romans used Mileum as a military post, which they had named Colonia Sarnensis Milevitana. Inscriptions of these names are still visible throughout the town today, and are considered to be inscriptions of important historical value. Four towns were bound together during this time, and were known as the Four Colonies. This confederation included Milevum, Collo, Rusicade and Cirta. The fortification wall that surrounds the town was added by Emperor Justinian in the sixth century, after which Milah gained fame for the councils that were held in the city and the legendary men who attended.

The most significant councils that were held here took place in 402 and 416. Some of the names that are now forever linked to Mila include Pope Innocent I, St. Optatus, Pollianus, Restitutus, Honorius and Severus. It is not exactly certain when Milah was finally taken over by the Umayyad Arabs, but it is suggested that this turning point in the history of the town took place between the years 675 to 682. It later came under the rule of the French, and gained its own independence as a city in 1984 when it became part of the Mila Province after Algeria gained its independence.

Looking at this beautiful city, nestled in a green, water rich oasis and surrounded by desert, the buildings and historical attractions within the city remain as they were in ancient times and are a rare glimpse into the past. The proud citizens who live in Mila are proud of the ancient city’s architectural wonders and interesting history. To experience the wonder of the ancient times in Algeria, a trip to Milah is highly recommended.