The Roman Forum was designed to be the center of social, political and economic life in the city. The innumerable remains inc... More
Foro Romano (Roman Forum)
The Roman Forum was designed to be the center of social, political and economic life in the city. The innumerable remains include the well-conserved triumphal arch of Emperor Septimius Severus, with reliefs depicting his victories and the base of the Temple of Saturn with its eight columns and their splendid Ionic capitals. The Rostrum is the famous platform from which Mark Antony gave his oration in Shakespeare's play after Julius Caesar's assassination. The platform became the setting for many important events in Rome's history. It was named the rostrum after the bows of the ships that form the decorative motif. The Temple of Vesta was the home of the Vestal Virgins, charged with keeping the sacred flame alight. The circular foundations still remain, near to a garden in which traces of the House of the Vestal Virgins can still be seen. The Basilica of Constantine and Massentius was used as the court, and the three remaining barrel-vaulted naves give an idea of its gigantic structure. The Arch of Titus celebrates victories in Judea, and in the reliefs you can see the spoils of war, including an altar and a seven-armed chandelier. Admission is free; call the number listed for information about guided tours.