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Itineraries in Rome - The Acropolis of Rome

Itineraries in Rome - The Acropolis of Rome ( The Circus Maximus, the Capitol and Piazza Venezia )

We start this afternoon tour from the largest building for games and shows of all time, the Circus Maximus . As big as 6 football pitches it housed over 250,000 spectators. We walk along the bank of the Tiber until we reach the first Roman port on the Tiber, the Tiberine Port from where foreign merchants disembarked their ships to bring their goods to the Foro Boario , Rome's main bull market.

In the Church of Santa Maria di Cosmedin , built over the remains of an ancient altar dedicated to Hercules, whose temple Hercules Victor , the oldest example of a Roman marble temple, can be seen a short distance away, we put our hand into the Mouth of Truth, the ancient mask that, according to medieval legend, used to bite liars. We are in the Velabro , the ancient swamp where the She-wolf, symbol of Rome, saved the twins Romulus and Remus. A glance at the great Arch of Janus and we are at the foot of the sacred hill: the Capitoline Hill.

After admiring the Insula, the typical 'condominium' of the Roman plebeians, which housed up to 400 people, we climb the famous staircase leading to the Aracoeli Church, built on the ruins of the temple of Juno Moneta (the ancient mint of the Romans), we arrive at the Piazza del Campidoglio . Described by the NY Times as the most beautiful square in the world, it is an astonishing concentration of artistic and architectural beauty. It owes its current appearance to Michelangelo: the large statues of Castor and Pollux introduce us to the central area where the equestrian statue of Marcus Aurelius stands. On either side are the splendid museums of the Palazzo dei Conservatori , the new Capitoline Museum (among the richest and oldest museums in the world) and the Tabularium where the city's Municipality resides.

At the foot of the Capitol we stop at the ancient Mamertine Prison where political prisoners were strangled and St Peter and St Paul the Patrons of Rome were imprisoned. As much as 60 million sesterces cost Julius Caesar the expropriation of the land where he had the Imperial Forums built. a universal symbol of archaeology. We walk among the ruins of the Forum of Peace, of Nerva, of Augustus and of Trajan up to the Trajan Column, called the Centenary Column (100 Roman feet high), which documents with its wrapping decorations the victories of the emperor over the Dacians.

t the end of the Fori Imperiali the last stop on the route, Piazza Venezia, the neurotic centre of everyday life. It is a curious sight to watch the traffic policeman directing traffic with his unmistakable mimicry. Overlooking the square is the Vittoriano , a gigantic monument to King Victor Emmanuel II, home of the Unknown Soldier and spectacular Belvedere. On the right is Palazzo Venezia , the historical seat of embassies and official residence of the Duce during the Fascist era.

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