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The Eternal City of Rome (3)

Wendy Yeh

It took me a lot of time and energy to plan out my itinerary to explore Rome’s most impressive squares, fountains, churches, museums, monuments, ancient ruins, and amazing tourists’ attractions. I wanted to discover interesting stories about the history of Rome.

The Eternal City of Rome counts as many as 900 churches. It was easy to spontaneously step into a church during my walking tour of a portion of t he city. I especially loved some of the small but beautiful churches.

The Pantheon in Rome, Italy, is a former Roman temple, now a Catholic Church named Basilica di Santa Maria ad Martyres (Basilica of St. Mary and the Martyrs). It is the best preserved monument from ancient Rome. It is one of the most imitated buildings in history. The Pantheon is a true ancient architectural wonder.

The word “pantheon” is a Greek adjective meaning “honor all gods.” In fact, the pantheon was first built as a temple to all gods.

The first Pantheon was built in 27 B.C. It was dedicated to Romulus, their mythological founder. The Romans celebrate April 21 as the founding date of the city of Rome. The Pantheon was given to the pope by Emperor Hadrian in 608. The Pantheon now contains the tombs of several Italian Kings, poets, and the famous Italian artist Raphael.

The most fascinating part of the Pantheon is its remarkably huge and open dome, with its famous hole in the top. It is called “the eye of the Pantheon.” That is the only source of light streaming into the interior. The marble floor features a design consisting of a series of ancient Roman geometric patterns. The 16 massive Corinthian columns supporting the portico weigh 60 tons each.

In front of the Pantheon is the beautiful “Fountain of the Pantheon.” It was designed in 1575 and sculpted out of marble. Locals and visitors around the globe appreciate this wonder work of angels and humans.

While Roman art was heavily influenced and highly inspired by the ancient Greek styles, they also had their own special ways of creating statues. Greek sculpture throughout the classical period consisted primarily of depictions of Gods and mythological figures and scenes. Many of the Roman sculptures were created mainly to honor their ancestors, gods and goddesses, emperors, philosophers, military generals, and popular leaders.

Rome was called the Eternal City back in the 1st century BC, because of the resilience strength it showed throughout the centuries. The city of Rome was founded near 3,000 thousand years ago, it continues to grow. As its influence expands, its splendor is everlasting. This is the reason why Rome is called “the Eternal City.”



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