Rome Hotel: Why People Should Spend More Time in Rome
Every year the number of customers visiting Rome increases of 5% and there are always more historical sights to see. This year has we had the chance to attend the inauguration of the Ara Pacis which remained closed for restorations under the supervision of the architect Richard Meier.
Few people know that booking an hotel close to the spanish steps or to trevi Fountain they can see not only the Ara pacis itself but also the Tomb of the emperor Augustus which is located in Piazza Augusto imperatore.
The Ara Pacis of Rome was built in the area of the "Campo Marzio", close to the "via Flaminia", during the four years going from 13 to 9 BC, to celebrate the victories of Augustus in the western provinces of the roman Empire.
The same Augustus indicated on the work "Res gestae divi Augusti" ( Achievements of the divine Augustus )the rituals and the scopes that had led the Senate to build the commemorative altar, which during a large part of the antiquity, as a direct witness of the link between monument and personality, was known as "Ara Pacis Augustae":
"When I came back to Rome from Spain and Gaul ... once I had successfully closed the enterprises in these provinces,
the Senate decided that for my return the "ara della Pace Augusta" should be consecrated in the "Campo Marzio" and I agreed that in this place the law officers, the priests and the vestal virgins could celebrate an annual sacrifice".
The area of the "Ara Pacis" is limited by a rectangular fence in marble with several ornaments and a low relief with a width of approximately 33 feet and a length of just 3 feet.
The central altar, where were taking place the ritual sacrifices, can be reached through two gates located at the center of the shortest sides of the fence and is placed in an higher position with respect to the perimeter of the structure.
The main artistic interest of the "Ara Pacis" is given by the low relief organised in overlap borders and panels that entirely recover the internal and external surface of the enclosure and part of the central altar.
The celebrative scope of the work is directly testified by the presence of the emperor Augustus and of Agrippa,general of the roman navy and son in law of the first emperor, among the represented persons, but also, on the west side, by the scenes dedicated to Aeneas, considered the ancestor of the julio-claudian family to whom the same August was belonging to, and by those remembering the divine origin of Rome with the she-wolf nursing the twins Romulus and Remus under the eye of their father, the god Mars.
The decorations of the "Ara Pacis" are completed by ornaments of naturalistic character, with low relief of plants and small animals and the "Tellus" (the Earth), the divinity representing the personification of peace and prosperity that the empire of Rome was getting prepared to live thanks to the end of the civil wars.
According to the study of some documents, it is considered that the original orientation of the work had been chosen also in relation to the big sundial called "Horologium" that was already surging in the "Campo Marzio", and which gnomon, nowadays located in "piazza di Montecitorio" and known as the obelisk ofthe Pharao Psammetico II, was projecting the own shadow exactly at the centre of the altar every September 23rd, date of birth of the emperor Augustus.
About The Author
Stefano Sandano is an archaeologist and tour guide of Rome and if you want to know more about Rome you can visit http://www.romanguide.com.
Date Posted: May 19, 2007
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