A majestic bronze study entitled ‘Panthère de Tunis’ of a powerful reclining panther with excellent rich autumnal colours and very fine detail, raised on its original marble base and signed Barye
Tunis is both the capital and the largest city of Tunisia. The greater metropolitan area, often referred to as Grand Tunis, has some 2,700,000 inhabitants.
Situated on a large Mediterranean Sea gulf (the Gulf of Tunis), behind the Lake of Tunis and the port of La Goulette, the city extends along the coastal plain and the hills that surround it. At its core lies its ancient medina, a World Heritage Site. Beyond this district lie the suburbs of Carthage, La Marsa, and Sidi Bou Said.
Just through the Sea Gate (also known as the Bab el Bhar and the Porte de France) begins the modern city, or Ville Nouvelle, traversed by the grand Avenue Habib Bourguiba (often referred to by popular press and travel guides as “the Tunisian Champs-Élysées“), where the colonial-era buildings provide a clear contrast to smaller, older structures. As the capital city of the country, it is the focus of Tunisian political and administrative life; it is also the centre of the country’s commercial activity. The expansion of the Tunisian economy in recent decades is reflected in the booming development of the outer city where one can see clearly the social challenges brought about by rapid modernization in Tunisia.
The existence of the town is attested by sources dating from the 6th century BC. In the 2nd millennium BC a town, originally named Tunes, was founded by Berbers and also over time occupied by Numidians. In 146 BC, the Romans destroyed Tunis (along with Carthage). However, the city was subsequently rebuilt under the rule of Augustus and became an important town under Roman control and the center of a booming agricultural industry. Situated on a hill, Tunis served as an excellent point from which the comings and goings of naval and caravan traffic to and from Carthage could be observed. It was one of the first towns in the region to fall under Carthaginian control, and in the centuries that followed it was mentioned in the military histories associated with Carthage. Thus, during Agathocles’ expedition, which landed at Cape Bon in 310 BC, Tunis changed hands on various occasions