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Skip the lengthy queue for the entry-ticket line and go straight to the fast lane entry for safety and security checks. After going into the Roman Colosseum at your assigned time, experience the tales of the Roman Emperors and gladiators.
Started under the Roman Emperor Vespasian in 72 AD, and finished by his follower Titus in 80 A.D., the Roman Colosseum was the biggest amphitheater ever before constructed.
Your ticket additionally consists of one entrance to Palatine Hill, a must-see view for all those visiting Rome. According to an old tradition, this is the area that is the birthplace of Eternal City. Overlook at the ancient ruins of Roman temples in the Imperial Forum, the center of all political, social, and also economic life in Rome throughout the Roman Republic.
Everyone recognizes the Colosseum with its three tiers of arcading. Strangely, it was not until the first century after Christ that Rome decided on the luxury of a permanent amphitheater for its infamous blood sports.
Completed under Titus, the arena is in the form of an ellipse measuring 190 by 155 m (620 by 513 ft) overall. Some 50,000 spectators could be accommodated to watch the gladiators and wild beast shows, protected from the rain or the scorching sun by the velum or velarium, a huge sailcloth awning stretched above the terraces.
The games were the constant talk of Rome; the inaugural performances lasted for 100 days and involved the slaughter of over 5,000 wild animals. The arena could also be flooded for the staging of mock naval combats. But was the Colosseum also the scene of Christian martyrdom? Nowadays the idea is viewed with some skepticism, though the Stations of the Cross set up around the arena perpetuates the belief. Whatever the truth, gladiator shows were held here till they were banned by Honorius (395-423) in 404. Transformed into a fortress in the Middle Ages, the building soon began to serve as a stone quarry. The Arch of Constantine is scarcely less famous than its world-renowned neighbor, it was raised in 315 to commemorate the victory of Constantine over his rival Maxentius.
Roman Forum: Historical Background
We are in the centre of ancient Rome. Here, Rome built after having dried up the marshlands its Forum where all the political, religious and commercial activities were held, between the Palatine, the Capitol and the Esquiline hills. It is not easy to move about these ruins without having some knowledge of the ten centuries of history – from the 6th century BC to the Byzantine age – only then, the monuments become meaningful. From the archaic Lapis Niger (Black Stone) to the Column of Phocas – the last monument to be built in the Forum – dating from 607 AD placed in order to celebrate the Byzantine Emperor Phocas, when rome had lost its splendor The orators spoke from the Rostra to the romans who had to elect their authorities.
The Curia, the Senate-houses and the political centre of ancient Rome, seems to have been built for the first time by by TuJius Hostius. It was reconstructed in 52 BC. but a new one was inaugurated in 29 BC by Augustus. What we see today is the last reconstruction wanted by Diocletian in 303 AD. The Curia has a magnificent interior although the present wooden ceiling is modern. It was able to seat 300 senators. In the Curia the so-called Plutei of Trojan are exhibited. They are two marble sculptured balustrades that probably decorated the Rostra and emphasised the merits of the Emperor Trajan. They also show how the Forum was laid out at the time. If the Curia was the political centre of Rome, the Basilica was the place where justice was administrated. The typical basilica was a great rectangular room with arcades on its sides. The Basilica Emilia is the most ancient basilica and the only one of which we have remains.
It was founded in 179 BC by the censor Aemilius Lepidus. It looks onto the Via Sacra and was originally richly decorated, but during the Middle Age, it was ransacked by the barbarians. Thanks to archaeological excavations a marble frieze of great interest for the understanding of the origins of Rome was found here. The Basilica Giulia , built by Caesar, was also completely destroyed. The Maxentius Basilica has three aisles and is supported by massive walls instead of the usual colonnade. After the Curia and the Basilica the temple was the most important building of the Forum. The remains of the Temple of Vesta from the end of the 2nd century BC.are entirely in brick, as is the nearby House of the Vestals; the latter is a large rectangular atrium arranged around a spacious courtyard.
inside the round temple dedicated to Vesta was kept the sacred fire, symbol of the state, wich hadn’t to burn out. In the Forum, there are the remains of the Temple of the Dioscuri, the mythical brothers Castor and Pollux, winners of the battle against the Etruscans and Latins. The temple was built in 484 BC, and then reconstructed in 1 17 AD, but the only three remaining pillars belong to a subsequent reconstruction done at the time of Tiberius (14-37). The Temple of Saturn is amongst the most ancient in Rome and is found at the foot of the Capitoline Hills. Its use was to keep the Public Treasury of the city Further ahead, are the remains of a colonnade that was found a century ago, the so-called Portico of the Dei Consentes. Probably the temple was dedicated to the twelve great divinities of Olympus; inside were kept golden statues of the gods and therefore the building is considered to have been the Roman version of the Greek Pantheon.The Temple of Concord is also found in the Forum. It is an important monument built in 367 AD by Furius Camillus in order to celebrate the end of the struggles between the patricians and the plebeians; the podium has been restored many times. After Caesar was assassinated, his body was cremated in the Forum and a pillar was built in memory of him. In 29 BC a Temple was dedicated to Caesar by Augustus, the first example of the deification of an Emperor Today there are some remains of the podium and of the tribune in front of it.
The Temple of Antoninus and Faustina was dedicated, in 141 AD, by Antonius Pius to his wife, and, after her death, to her imperial memory. lt is one of the best preserved temples thanks to the fact that it was converted into a church (now the Church of San Lorenzo in Miranda). Placed on a high podium, it has a splendid fagade with marble columns and steps. The well preserved frieze decorated with griffins, branched candlesticks and volutes is lovely Unusual is the bronze door kept in the Temple of Romolus. It was built on the Via Sacra (Holy Road) by Maxentius to honour his son who died in 309. It has an innovative structure; a circular building flanked by two rectangular rooms with apses. In the 4th century. Pope Felix IV adapted it as an atrium of the Church of Saints Cosmas and Damian. After the ancient Roman Forum it is worth visiting the later Forums, built during the era of the Emperors and therefore called Imperial Forums.
Many other Fora were built when the Roman Forum became too small for the ever increasing Roman population. Today, they are called Imperial Fora. Many of these Fora are now in ruins because during the Middle Ages they were used as quarries, using the old stones to build new buildings. Today if you walk from the Piazza Venezia towards the Coliseum, along the via dei Fori Imperiali.you can imagine what Rome must have been like under the rule of the Emperors.
The Forum of Trajan was the last to be built; it is the most lavish and was constructed to celebrate the victory over the Dacians. The work of Apollodorus of Damascus, it is 300 metres long and 185 metres wide. The Basilica Ulpia was built here and now only four rows of columns in the central part are standing. The Forum contained the famous Trajan Pillar which stood between the two libraries and near the Temple of the Divine Trajan.
The Markets of Trajan are a wide exedra made of two semicircular floors with many shops, even on the terraces that crown the building. It is considered the most ancient Roman commercial centre remaining. Further on, we find the Forum of Caesar which was the first Imperial Forum, inaugurated in 46 B.C. At its entrance is a bronze statue of the dictator The Temple of Venus Genitrix was built here; only three columns on the high plinth are still standing.The Forum of Caesar was built to replace the old Roman Forum and to commemorate Caesar’s victory at Pharsalus. The Forum of Augustus was built in 42 AD as a commemoration of the Battle of Philippi. It is on the other side of via dei Fori Imperiali. Augustus built the Temple of Mars Ultor which is dedicated to revenging Mars; there remains today the podium, a few columns. and parts of the colonnade and exedra. The Casa dei Cavalieri di Rodi was built during the Middle Ages and has a well-preserved colonnaded atrium. There follows the remains of the Forum of Nerva in which are the so-called “colonnacce”, two huge columns sustaining an entablature decorated with an elegant frieze dedicated to feminine activities. A massive basement is all that remains of the Temple of Minerva. A little further on are the ruins of the Forum of Vespasian.
After visiting the Museum of the Fora, located in a nearby convent, to the right can be admired the ruins of the Basilica of Maxentius is a large building from the 4th century AD of which only the original aisles remain. Its vaults are 25 metres high, but the highest ones (35 metres high) have collapsed. Maxentius commissioned it but it was actually finished by Constantine.
During the summertime, the Basilica hosts great musical performances. This concludes our visit to imperial Rome.
- Combo package with skip-the-line entry at your chosen time to the Colosseum,
- Entry to the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill (1 entry per, valid for 2 successive days consisting of the day you see the Colosseum),
- Reserving and handling charge,
- Map of Imperial Rome.
- Guided tours.
Cancellations and changes are not possible for this ticket.
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