T HE T OPOGRAPHY OF R OME
Angela pp. 22-27, 68-75, 200-209, 218-220, 226-235
The City of Rome
• Sited on the Tiber River.
• Fertile, defensible, access to the sea, salt fields.
• Seven Hills of Rome (have to know for exam): Capitoline, Aventine, Palatine, Esquiline, Quirinal,
• The hills were separated by marshes, which flooded frequently.
• Evidence for settlement at Rome as early as 900/800 BCE (cremations and inhumations on the Palatine).
• Early society: poor, subsistence, mud-and-wood huts.
• (Evidence of these huts discovered on the Palatine about 60 years ago).
• Do we have here archaeological confirmation of Rome’s founding in 753 BCE?
• The Romans believed this
• And preserved “tth hut of Romulus”.
• Remains of an 8 century wall were discovered as well.
Ancient Urban Planning
• This addressed only how cities should be laid out
• There did exist land surveyors and architects however
• A‘Roman’town (wherever it was in the Empire) had several features: walls, temples, a forum, water
supply, and paved streets.
• Porticoes, baths, theatre and amphitheatre
(didn’t get all slide)
• In any town, the forum was originally just an open space, later walled and enclosed with a gate to control
• The amphitheatre was normally situated on the outskirts of a city (to keep crowds away)
• Walls were built for security but also to control access to the city and set up (perhaps) a customs barrier.
The Growth of Urban Rome
• Rome’s expansion and consolidation of her empire is reflected in the fabric of the city itself.
• 7 century BCE: early urbanization (699 – 600 BCE)
• Forum was paved, monumental religious architecture, shops and houses.
• 4 century BCE:
• City was walled, first aqueducts; new temples.
• 200 BCE: wealth, art, slaves poured into the city; extensive building.
• 2 century BCE:
• The economic benefits of empire were providing a higher standard of living (for some):
• Triumphal arches, porticoes, paved streets, marble temples.
• Much competition for conspicuous exhibits: ‘prestige urbanism’
• But although architecture proceeded quickly until 100 BCE, there was still no real commitment to urban
• In the Republic the office of aedile was only for one year (they took care of the roads and planning, etc)
• Dictators had the most success with the long-term organization
The Influence of The Roman Generals
• Sulla: reshaped Rome’s monumental centre in the 80s BCE:
• Temple to Jupiter, Tabularium, the Curia, Marble paving in the Forum.
• Pompey: first stone theatre in 55 BCE; first public gardens.
• Ceasar: repaved the Forum, public gardens, Forum Julium, T