The influence of Rome and early Christianity (1st-10th centuries AD)

The end of the Talaiotic world came with the Roman conquest of 123 BC, which resulted in the disappearance of all indigenous communities over just a few generations. Menorca fell under Roman influence and adopted a new political and administrative order, a new language and a new religion.

The island’s inclusion in Roman trade routes brought about notable growth to new populations around the ports of Mago (Maó), Iamo (Ciutadella) and Sanisera (Sanitja); the latter of which was a military camp found in the island’s north. With the Roman Empire, Menorca became part of the Hispania Tarraconensis province, and the cities of Iamo and Mago became municipia in 73/74 AD.

With the fall of the Roman Empire in the 5th century AD, Menorca fell under the influence of the Vandals and the Byzantines, at a time when Christianity had already taken firm roots, as evidenced by the construction of numerous basilicas used for religious worship.

From the 6th century, the various conflicts in the Mediterranean and the disintegration of Byzantine power left the islands defenceless against invasion by pirates, the Normans and Muslims.