The Vittoriano live cam
Panoramic view of the Trajan's Market, Capitoline Hill, Via dei Fori Imperiali and the Basilica of St. Mary of the Altar of Heaven

The Vittoriano

The National Monument to the first king of Italy Victor Emmanuel II, also known as Il Vittoriano, dominates Venice Square (Piazza Venezia); the imposing structure was designed by the architect Giuseppe Sacconi and had the purpose of paying tribute to the memory of Victor Emmanuel II and also celebrating the greatness of Rome, the final result was one of the most impressive monumental giants of white marble from Botticino ever built, all appears extremely sophisticated, thousands of tourists are daily attracted by the harmony of its lines and the elegance of every smallest detail; the complex and the Bronze equestrian monument to Victor Emmanuel II dominating at the center were both inaugurated in 1911 but only completed in 1935. The neoclassical portico, enriched by Corinthian columns, and the statue of the Goddess Rome are situated on top of the major staircase where is the Altar of the Homeland (Altare della Patria), as is usually called the whole structure, a work of the sculptor Angelo Zanelli; it holds the tomb of the Unknown Soldier (Milite Ignoto), lying here since 1921 as symbol of all unidentified soldiers killed during the First World War. From the top panoramic terrace, the so-called Quadrigas Terrace (Terrazza delle Quadrighe) it is possible to enjoy a breathtaking view over the capital and, in its surroundings, over Trajan's Market (Mercato di Traiano), Capitoline Hill (Campidoglio) and Via dei Fori Imperiali.

The large complex constructed using brick-faced concrete and made up of ruins and surviving buildings and structures, is known as Trajan's Market and was built in 100-110 AD on the slope of Quirinale Hill (Colle Quirinale); home to the Museum of the Imperial Fora (Museo dei Fori Imperiali) it is divided from the Trajan's Forum (Foro di Traiano) by an ancient street, Via Biberatica; the shops here were probably called "tabernae" with small windows and a large opening to the street, anyway it is said that this place was more of an administrative than a commercial space.

Not so far is the Capitoline Hill, one of the seven hills of Rome where the first Romans settled and built their fortress city, today seat of the capital's municipal government. Piazza del Campidoglio, created by the great Renaissance artist and architect Michelangelo Buonarroti, boasts an equestrian statue of Marcus Aurelius in the middle of the square while at its sides New Palace (Palazzo Nuovo) and Palazzo dei Conservatori, now home to the Capitoline Museums (Musei Capitolini); adjacent to the square at the highest point of the Capitoline Hill, is the magnificent Basilica of St. Mary of the Altar of Heaven (Basilica Sanctae Mariae de Ara coeli or Basilica di Santa Maria in Aracoeli) of Roman-Gothic style enriched by a stunning exterior made of a staircase of 124 marble steps, it hardly survived the construction works of the Vittoriano, however the ancient vestry, the convent, the huge tower of Pope Paul III as well as the mosaics placed on its façade were not unfortunately spared; the basilica is also famous for the wooden statue of the infant Jesus (Santo Bambino) who is said to have miraculous powers.

Great emotions will give the itinerary along Via dei Fori Imperiali (formerly Via dell'Impero), built by order of the Fascist dictator Benito Mussolini, this artery was conceived to connect Piazza Venezia to the Colosseum (Colosseo), today it runs right through the Imperial Fora (Fori Imperiali) and, occasionally, turns into a pedestrian area, each year on June 2, for example, it hosts the military parade to celebrate the founding of the Italian Republic.

Cam on-line since: 05/02/2013

Comments

  • avatar
    • 5 years ago
    • Mr. M

    ROMA. Citta Eterna