Rome October 2007 » Ruins  (64 Slides)     [Page 1 of 1] :: Jump To  
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Baths of Caracalla * (28 Slides)
The Forum * (13 Slides)
Circus Maximus * (5 Slides)
Palatine Hill * (10 Slides)
Area Sacra dell'Argentina * (4 Slides)
  Baths of Caracalla  
  The Forum  
  Circus Maximus  
  Palatine Hill  
  Area Sacra dell'Argentina  
ColonnaTraiano * Trajan's Column
Trajan's column was erected A.D. 106 to 113 in honor of emperor Trajan. It was located at the then just completed Trajan forum and surrounded by buildings. The column commemorates his victories in Dacia (now Romania).
The Trajan column including its base is 42m high (138ft). This was exactly the height of the hill that stood at this site. It had been leveled to create an open space for the construction of Trajan's Forum.

Band of Reliefs
A band of beautifully carved reliefs winds around the column. The band is more than 180m/600ft long. Its width varies from 60cm/2ft at the bottom to 120cm/4ft at the top. There are more than 2000 carved figures depicting the story of Trajan's Dacian wars between 101-102 and 105-106 A.D. It starts with soldiers preparing for the war and ends with the Dacians being ousted from their homeland. The column consists of 29 pieces of white marble, the largest one weighing up 77 tons. The reliefs were not always in plain white: originally they were gilded and, like many roman monuments, brightly colored.

Initially, a statue of an eagle topped the column, but after Trajan's death it was replaced by a 20ft tall statue of the emperor himself. His ashes and later those of his wife Plotina were placed in the base of the column. In 1587 the statue Statue of Emperor Trajanwas replaced again, this time by one of St. Peter.

Saved from Demolition
Legend has it that the column was saved from demolition thanks to Pope Gregory the Great (590-604). He was so moved by a relief depicting Trajan helping the mother of a dead soldier, that he begged God to save Trajan's pagan soul from hell. God then told the pope that Trajan's soul had been saved. The legend also tells Trajan's tongue was still intact when his ashes were excavated. The tongue told about his rescue from hell. The area around the column was then declared sacred, thus saving the column from demolition.

The column is located at Trajan's forum - part of the Imperial Forums - at the Via dei Fori Imperiali, right next to the Piazza Venezia. * 2048 x 1536 * (551KB)
MercatiTraiano_1 * Trajan's Markets
Mercati Traianei
Rome's ancient shopping centerknown as Trajan's Markets is remarkably well preserved and worth a visit.
The complex
Trajan's Market, a large complex of warehouses, shops and offices where the Romans would gather to purchase goods and conduct business, was built between 107 and 110 AD by the Emperor Trajan's favorite architect, Apollodorus of Damascus. Trajan's Market, Rome Apollodorus was integral in designing the famous Forum which bears the emperor's name and borders the market.

Trajan's Market was set into the side of Quirinal Hill and served to complete the forum. Apollodorus built a large monumental facade consisting of a half exedra bordered by a row of columns. At both ends were smaller exedras that were covered by a halve dome.

Historians believe that the upper level (Some additional levels were added during the Middle Ages) of this semi-circular brick and concrete market was used for offices from where the whole market place was managed. Adjacent to these offices was a large warehouse.
It were the lower levels, however, that was the center Trajan's Market, Romeof activity. There, merchants sold a variety of goods to the average Roman citizen, including wine, oil, fruits, vegetables, and other grocery items. These shops were called ?tabernaes? and were barrel-vaulted cubicles with small windows and a large opening to the street. They were often decorated with mosaics depicting the wares in the shop.
Also in the lower part of the market were two large halls, which were probably used for concerts, speeches or education.

The roof of the market was meant to create light and space fashioned as an arched concrete vault that sat on piers to allow sunlight to seep through into the shops while still protecting the shoppers from the weather.

Architectural Wonder
Once admired as one of the wonders of the ancient world, today Trajan's Market is still considered one of the finest examples of Roman urban architecture. * 2048 x 1536 * (613KB)
MercatiTraiano_2 * 2048 x 1536 * (2.13MB)
PonteRotto * The Pons Aemilius (today Ponte Rotto) is the oldest Roman stone bridge in Rome, Italy. Preceded by a wooden version, it was stone since the 1st century BC. Once spanning across the Tiber (connecting the Forum Boarium with Trastevere), a single arch in mid-river is all that remains today, lending the bridge the name Ponte rotto ('Broken bridge').

The oldest piers of the bridge was probably laid when the Via Aurelia was constructed in the mid-3rd century BC. [1] Augustus completely rebuilt the bridge with a tufa and concrete core. Initially constructed in 179 BC with stone pillars and a wooden superstructure, the bridge was fitted in 142 BC wholly with six stone arches.

Damaged and repaired in 280, 120, and 1557, the bridge was defunct by 1598, when its eastern half was carried away. The remaining half was demolished in the 1880s, leaving behind only one arch. * 3072 x 2304 * (4.86MB)
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