View of Rome from Viale del Belvedere, Pincio (The Pincian Hill).


by Eve Andersson

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The Colosseum

Constructed in the 1st century AD, the Colosseum at one time held 50,000 spectators watching gladiatorial feats. Subsequent earthquakes and use of its stone for other construction have left the Colosseum in a partially ruined state. The true extent of its enormousness isn't apparent until you set foot in the building.

The Colosseum. The Colosseum. The Colosseum, behind ruins of the Roman Forum. Arches and the top of an Ionic column.  The Colosseum. Relief with gladiatorial scenes.  The Colosseum. Underground area.  The Colosseum. View of early Jerusalem, 17th century or early 18th century.  The Colosseum.

The Pantheon

Built in 27 BC, this is one of Rome's best-preserved ancient buildings. The oculus at the top of the dome allows in natural light, affording a beautiful view of the gorgeous artwork and architectural elements of the Pantheon. Raphael is buried here, as are a number of Italian kings. It is considered a place of worship, and some visitors do use it that way, despite the din of the tourists.

Oculus, The Pantheon. Painting.  The Pantheon. Altar, The Pantheon. Bust of Raphael.  The Pantheon. Statue.  The Pantheon. Sign reading Indulgentia Plenaria Perpetua Pro Vivis et Defunctis, Chapel of St Joseph in the Holy Land, The Pantheon. Floor, The Pantheon. Painting, The Pantheon. Detail, Tomb of King Humbert I (2nd king of Italy 1844-1900) and Margherita Savoia (Queen of Italy 1851-1926).  The Pantheon.

Roman Forum and Palatine Hill

So many fascinating ancient ruins are concentrated in this small space, the size of a few city blocks. This was the center of the Roman Empire. Julius Caesar was assassinated here, and people still pay homage to him with fresh flowers.

Pink marble column, Basilica Aemilia, Roman Forum. Statue of Numa Pompilius, 2nd century AD, Basilica Aemilia, Roman Forum. Apollo sculpture, 2nd half of the 4th century BC.  Museo Palatino (Palatine Museum). Scultpure of a dancer, 5th century BC.  Museo Palatino (Palatine Museum). Fishpond, with moss-covered fountain, Palatine Hill. Arco di Settimio Severo (Arch of Septimius Severus) and Tempio di Saturno (Temple of Saturn), Roman Forum. Pig, sheep, and bull, Plutei of Trajan, Basilica Aemilia, Roman Forum. Ara di Cesare (Altar of Caesar), believed to be the site of Caesar's cremation. Detail showing items taken from the Temple in Jerusalem, Arco di Tito (Arch of Titus), Roman Forum. Arco di Settimio Severo (Arch of Septimius Severus), Roman Forum, and surrounding buildings. Casa di Augusto (house of Augustus), Palatine Hill. Charred, engraved stone, Roman Forum. Roman Forum, viewed from Palatine Hill. Painted decorations of style IV, 54-68 AD.  Museo Palatino (Palatine Museum). Bell plate with Athena, Perseo and Gorgone, 36-28 BC.  Museo Palatino (Palatine Museum). Stadium, Palatine Hill. Tempio di Romolo (Romulus' Temple), Roman Forum. Tempio di Venere e Roma (Temple of Venus and Rome), Roman Forum, viewed from the Colosseum.

Streets, Piazzas and other City Scenes

Buildings, Campo de' Fiori. Oratory, Campo de' Fiori. Insula dell'Ara Coeli, constructed early 2nd century.  The fresco depicts Christ descended from the cross between the virgin Mary and St. John the Apostle. Obelisk.  Piazza del Popolo. Neptune fighting an octopus (with the help of two pigeons), Fontana del Moro (the Moor Fountain), Piazza Navona. Dragon fountain, Hotel Columbus. Foro di Nerva (Forum of Nerva) and a streetlight on Via dei Fori Imperiali. Corner of Via del Pellegrino and Vicolo del Bollo. Woman riding bicycle on Via del Pellegrino. Via della Stelletta. View of Rome from Viale della Trinit?ei Monti, Pincio (The Pincian Hill). Fontana di Trevi (Trevi Fountain). Scooter riders in front of Fontana del Mascherone (Fountain of the Mask) (1626). Oratory, Via dei Maroniti. Door, Palazzo Madama. Piazza del Campidoglio. Sphinx.  Piazza del Popolo. Piazza della Rotonda. Fountain detail, Piazza della Rotonda. McDonald's, Rome style.  Piazza della Rotonda. Piazza di Spagna‎ on a rainy day. Piazza Navona. Sea monster, Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi (Fountain of the Four Rivers), Piazza Navona. Vittorio Emanuele II Monument, Piazza Venezia. Santa Maria di Loreto (16th century church), Colonna Traiana (Trajan's Column; completed 113 AD), and Santissimo Nome di Maria al Foro Traiano (Church of the Most Holy Name of Mary at the Trajan Forum; completed 1751). Scalinata della Trinit?ei Monti (The Spanish Steps). Torre delle Milizie (Tower of the Milices, constructed c. 1200), Santa Caterina da Siena (completed 1770), Casa dei Cavalieri di Rodi (House of the Knights of Rhodes; 12th century construction; 15th century reconstruction). Via delle Quattro Fontane. Arco di Costantino (Arch of Constantine). View of rome from Trinit?ei Monti.


Rome's churches contain an impressive quantity of artwork, including (in multiple churches) paintings by the venerable Caravaggio.

Nave, San Luigi dei Francesi (Church of St. Louis of the French). Artwork, Basilica di San Pietro in Vincoli (Saint Peter in Chains). Untitled work (2009) containing a skull by Giovanni Manfredini (Italian artist, born 1963), Santa Maria del Popolo. San Luigi dei Francesi (Church of St. Louis of the French). Contarelli Chapel, containing three paintings by Caravaggio: The Calling of St Matthew, The Inspiration of Saint Matthew, and The Martyrdom of Saint Matthew.  San Luigi dei Francesi (Church of St. Louis of the French). Scalinata della Trinit?ei Monti (the Spanish Steps), leading to Trinit?ei Monti. Dragon, Santa Maria del Popolo. Skull with wings, Santa Maria del Popolo. VIVI (2010) by Giovanni Manfredini (Italian artist, born 1963), Santa Maria del Popolo. Ceiling, Orsini chapel, Trinit?ei Monti. Basso della Rovere Chapel, Santa Maria del Popolo. Cybo Chapel, Santa Maria del Popolo. Artist in front of the Basso della Rovere Chapel, Santa Maria del Popolo.

The Vatican

This is the world's smallest sovereign nation (since 1929 when Mussolini granted it independence), surrounded on all sides by the city of Rome. Highlights include St. Peter's Basilica, which has a mummified pope on display, and the Sistine Chapel, famous for its ceiling painted by Michelangelo. The Vatican Museums are very, very extensive.

Gallery of Maps, Vatican Museums. Belvedere Torso, Room of the Muses, Vatican Museums. Sala Rotonda, Museo Pio-Clementino, Vatican Museums. Bronze statue of Hercules, Sala Rotonda, Museo Pio-Clementino, Vatican Museums. Statue of Artemis, the fertility goddess, whose body has been covered with severed testicles of sacrificial bulls.  Vatican Museums. Tapestry Gallery, Vatican Museums.  The ceiling has been painted as to appear three dimensional. Radio Vaticana (Vatican Radio), viewed from St. Peter's Basilica. Piet?y Michelangelo, St. Peter's Basilica. Upside down map of southern Italy (drawn from Rome's point of view), Gallery of Maps, Vatican Museums. Coat of arms, garden, Vatican City.  Viewed from St. Peter's Basilica. Octagonal Court, Vatican Museums. Floor, Sala Rotonda, Museo Pio-Clementino, Vatican Museums. Julius Caesar's assassination, tapestry detail, Tapestry Gallery, Vatican Museums. Piazza San Pietro (Saint Peter's Square), viewed from St. Peter's Basilica. Mosaic in the dome of St. Peter's Basilica, made of smalti. Embalmed body of Pope John XXIII, St. Peter's Basilica.

More photos: View all photos in the directory /photos/italy/.
Eve Andersson (
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