The city was originally created by the Phoenicians, who called it Sewa (royal city). Later it was renamed Cirta, by the Numidian king Syphax, who turned it into his capital. The city was taken over by Numidia, the country of the Berber people, after the Phoenicians were defeated by Rome in the Third Punic War. In 112 B.C., the city was occupied by Jugurtha, who defeated his half-brother Adherbal. The city later served as the base for Roman generals Quintus Caecilius Metellus Numidicus and Gaius Marius in their war against Jugurtha. Later, with the removal of King Juba I and the remaining supporters of Pompeyin Africa (c. 46), Julius Caesar gave special rights to the citizens of Cirta, now known as Colonia Sittlanorum.

In 311 AD, during the civil war between emperor Maxentius and usurper Domitius Alexander (a former governor of Africa), the city was destroyed. Rebuilt in 313 AD, it was subsequently named after emperor Constantine the Great, who had defeated Maxentius. Captured by the Vandals in 432, Constantine returned to the Byzantine Exarchate of Africa (i.e. North Africa) from 534 to 697. It was conquered by the Arabs in the 8th century, receiving the name of Qacentina. (Wikipedia)

All photos are copyright to Steve Richards

Eagle & swimmers

This panel has a 'shield of triangles' patterns with an eagle at its centre. On one side are two swimmers. 

Venus and sea creatures

This is the same subject as the mosaic from Setif. The last three images show part of a geometric panel which may  have been attached to this figure mosaic. 

Other mosaics from the museum