Porta San Sebastiano
The Porta San Sebastiano is the largest and one of the best-preserved gates passing through the Aurelian Walls in Rome. Originally known as the Porta Appia, the gate sat astride the Appian Way, the regina viarum, which originated at the Porta Capena in the Servian Wall. During the Middle Ages probably it was called Accia, a name whose etymology is uncertain, but arguably associated with the river Almone, called acqua Accia. AD1434 calls it Porta Domine quo vadis, the present name is attested only since the second half of 15th century, due to the vicinity to the Basilica of San Sebastiano and its catacombs. The original structure was constructed by Aurelian ca, AD275 and included a double-arched opening surmounted by bow windows and two semi-cylindrical towers. The façade was faced with travertine, after a restoration, the towers were enlarged and linked, through two parallel walls, to the preexisting Arch of Drusus. In AD 401-402 Emperor Honorius reshaped the gate with a single fornix, the bases of the towers were incorporated within two square-plan platforms, faced with marble. A modification yielded the present form, in which a floor has been added to the whole structure.
Some notches on the jambs could indicate that wooden beams were employed to strengthen the latch, because of the importance of the Appian Way, that just here entered the town, the whole area was concerned with great traffic movements, especially during ancient Rome. This rule probably was for the members of the Imperial family. Some lumps, still visible on the upholstery in the basis of the monument, are quite interesting. The event is commemorated by an inscription above the arch, which - using an adulation maybe a bit excessive - compares Charles to Scipio, “CARLO V ROM. On 4 December 1571, the procession in honor of Marcantonio Colonna. The feature of that procession that mostly raised curiosity and interest certainly was the parade of the one hundred and seventy chained Turkish prisoners. On that occasion Pasquino, the famous Roman talking statue, expressed its opinion, but this time without talking, it was primped with the head of a Turk. Since the 5th century, and at least until the 15th, a document dating back to 1467 reports an announcement specifying the modalities for the auction sale of the town gates for the period of a year.
As regards the interior, the most relevant changes are recent and date back to 1942-1943, the white-and-black bicromatic mosaics, still visible in some rooms, were realized in those years. Currently the towers house the Museum of the Walls, that exhibits, among other things, models of the walls, Kurt, ed. Age of spirituality, late antique and early Christian art, third to seventh century, no
Capture of Rome
On 27 March 1861, the Parliament declared Rome the capital of the Kingdom of Italy. However, the Italian government could not take its seat in Rome because it did not control the territory. In addition, a French garrison was maintained in the city by Napoleon III of France in support of Pope Pius IX, who was determined not to hand over temporal power in the States of the Church. In July 1870, at the very last moment of the Churchs rule over Rome, in July 1870, the Franco-Prussian War began. In early August, Napoleon III recalled his garrison from Rome, in the earlier Austro-Prussian War Italy had allied with Prussia and Italian public opinion favoured the Prussian side at the start of the war. The removal of the French garrison eased tensions between Italy and France, Italy remained neutral in the Franco-Prussian War. With the French garrison gone, widespread public demonstrations demanded that the Italian government take Rome, but Rome remained under French protection on paper, therefore an attack would still have been regarded as an act of war against the French Empire.
Until events elsewhere took their course the Italians were unwilling to provoke Napoleon, the new French government was clearly in no position to retaliate against Italy, nor did it possess the political will to protect the Popes position. Along with the letter, the count carried a document that Lanza had prepared, the Pope would retain the inviolability and prerogatives attaching to him as a sovereign. The Leonine City would remain under the jurisdiction and sovereignty of the Pontiff. According to Raffaele De Cesare, The Pope’s reception of San Martino was unfriendly, Pius IX allowed violent outbursts to escape him. Throwing the King’s letter upon the table he exclaimed, Fine loyalty and you are all a set of vipers, of whited sepulchres, and wanting in faith. He was perhaps alluding to other letters received from the King, growing calmer, he exclaimed, I am no prophet, nor son of a prophet, but I tell you, you will never enter Rome. San Martino was so mortified that he left the next day, several times during his pontificate, Pius IX considered leaving Rome.
As the frequency of protests against the Papal States increased across the Italian peninsula. Palma, a prelate, who was standing at a window, was shot. On February 9,1849, democratic revolutionaries of the new Italian republic seized Rome, on 12 April 1850, Pius IX returned to Rome, no longer a political liberal supporting constitutional republics. A occurrence was in 1862, when Giuseppe Garibaldi was in Sicily gathering volunteers for a campaign to take Rome under the slogan Roma o Morte
Kingdom of Italy
The state was founded as a result of the unification of Italy under the influence of the Kingdom of Sardinia, which can be considered its legal predecessor state. Italy declared war on Austria in alliance with Prussia in 1866, Italian troops entered Rome in 1870, ending more than one thousand years of Papal temporal power. Italy entered into a Triple Alliance with Germany and Austria-Hungary in 1882, victory in the war gave Italy a permanent seat in the Council of the League of Nations. Fascist Italy is the era of National Fascist Party rule from 1922 to 1943 with Benito Mussolini as head of government, according to Payne, Fascist regime passed through several relatively distinct phases. The first phase was nominally a continuation of the parliamentary system, came the second phase, the construction of the Fascist dictatorship proper from 1925 to 1929. The third phase, with activism, was 1929–34. The war itself was the phase with its disasters and defeats. Italy was allied with Nazi Germany in World War II until 1943 and it switched sides to the Allies after ousting Mussolini and shutting down the Fascist party in areas controlled by the Allied invaders.
Shortly after the war, civil discontent led to the referendum of 1946 on whether Italy would remain a monarchy or become a republic. Italians decided to abandon the monarchy and form the Italian Republic, the Kingdom of Italy claimed all of the territory which is modern-day Italy. The development of the Kingdoms territory progressed under Italian re-unification until 1870, the state for a long period of time did not include Trieste or Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol, which are in Italy today, and only annexed them in 1919. After the Second World War, the borders of present-day Italy were founded, the Kingdom of Italy was theoretically a constitutional monarchy. Executive power belonged to the monarch, as executed through appointed ministers, two chambers of parliament restricted the monarchs power—an appointive Senate and an elective Chamber of Deputies. The kingdoms constitution was the Statuto Albertino, the governing document of the Kingdom of Sardinia. In theory, ministers were responsible to the king.
However, in practice, it was impossible for an Italian government to stay in office without the support of Parliament, members of the Chamber of Deputies were elected by plurality voting system elections in uninominal districts. A candidate needed the support of 50% of those voting, and of 25% of all enrolled voters, if not all seats were filled on the first ballot, a runoff was held shortly afterwards for the remaining vacancies. After a brief multinominal experimentation in 1882, proportional representation into large, Socialists became the major party, but they were unable to form a government in a parliament split into three different factions, with Christian Populists and classical liberals
Porta Pia is a gate in the Aurelian Walls of Rome, Italy. One of Pope Pius IVs civic improvements to the city, it is named after him, construction began in 1561 and ended in 1565, after the artists death. A1561 bronze commemorative medal by Gianfederico Bonzagna shows a plan by Michelangelo. The façade on the outside of the city was completed in 1869 under the Neo-Classicist design by Virginio Vespignani, a replacement was needed because of the new urban area, which could no longer provide access through the ancient Porta Nomentana for the Via Nomentana. Moreover, even forty years after its construction, the gate was shown on maps of Rome as almost like a ruin and it was, Michelangelos last architectural work – he died shortly before the work was completed. The work was carried out by Giacomo Del Duca, who built Porta San Giovanni, most experts consider that Michelangelo was concerned with creating picturesque and dramatic facades to fulfill its important symbolic function as an entrance to Rome.
The gate is further emphasized by his positioning of the portal at the end of strada Pia and it continues on the current Via XX Settembre, to conclude with an imposing frontal prospect a long straight front beginning at the Quirinal. The external facade was completed in 1869 to neoclassical plans by Virginio Vespignani, beginning in 1853 with a restoration due to damage from a lightning strike in 1851, the works included the addition of new buildings and a courtyard. The new facade, in keeping with the city walls, houses two statues each in their own niche, flanked by four columns. The Pope wanted a memorial to his escape from danger during the collapse of the chamber at the SantAgnese convent during his visit there on April 12,1855. A marble and bronze monument is to be found at the point of the breach. Opposite the gate, on the side, at the centre of the piazzale di Porta Pia, is the Monumento al Bersagliere. The buildings between the two arches of the gate, once housing the office, are now the seat of the Historical Museum of the Bersaglieri.
Here, on September 11,1926, the antifascist activist Gino Lucetti threw a bomb against the car transporting Benito Mussolini, capture of Rome Media related to Porta Pia at Wikimedia Commons
The Romans constructed numerous aqueducts in order to bring water from often distant sources into cities and towns, supplying public baths, latrines and private households. Aqueducts provided water for mining operations, farms, Aqueducts moved water through gravity alone, along a slight downward gradient within conduits of stone, brick or concrete. Most conduits were buried beneath the ground, and followed the contours of the terrain, obstructing peaks were circumvented or, less often, tunneled through. Where valleys or lowlands intervened, the conduit was carried on bridgework, or its contents fed into high-pressure lead, ceramic or stone pipes, most aqueduct systems included sedimentation tanks, which helped reduce any water-borne debris. Sluices and castella aquae regulated the supply to individual destinations, the run-off water from aqueducts drove urban water-mills, and scoured the drains and sewers. Romes first aqueduct supplied a water fountain sited at the cattle market. By the 3rd century AD, the city had aqueducts, sustaining a population of over a million in a water-extravagant economy.
Most Roman aqueducts proved reliable, and durable, some were maintained into the modern era. Methods of aqueduct surveying and construction are noted by Vitruvius in his work De Architectura, the general Frontinus gives more detail in his official report on the problems and abuses of Imperial Romes public water supply. Notable examples of architecture include the supporting piers of the Aqueduct of Segovia. The reliance of ancient communities upon such water resources restricted their potential growth, by the early Imperial era, the citys aqueducts supported a population of over a million, and an extravagant water supply for public amenities had become a fundamental part of Roman life. The run-off of aqueduct water scoured the sewers of cities and towns, Water from aqueducts was used to supply villas, ornamental urban and suburban gardens, market gardens and agricultural estates, the latter being the core of Romes economy and wealth. Rome had several springs within its perimeter walls but its groundwater was notoriously unpalatable, water from the river Tiber was badly affected by pollution and waterborne diseases.
The citys demand for water had probably exceeded its local supplies by 312 BC, when the citys first aqueduct. The Aqua Appia was one of two major projects of the time, the other was a military road between Rome and Capua, the first leg of the so-called Appian Way. Both projects had significant strategic value, as the Third Samnite War had been under way for thirty years by that point. The road allowed rapid troop movements, and by design or fortunate coincidence, most of the Aqua Appia ran within a buried conduit and it was fed by a spring 16. A second aqueduct, the Aqua Anio Vetus, was commissioned some forty years and its flow was more than twice that of the Aqua Appia, and it entered the city on raised arches, supplying water to higher elevations of the city
Rome is a special comune and the capital of Italy. Rome serves as the capital of the Lazio region, with 2,873,598 residents in 1,285 km2, it is the countrys largest and most populated comune and fourth-most populous city in the European Union by population within city limits. It is the center of the Metropolitan City of Rome, which has a population of 4.3 million residents, the city is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, within Lazio, along the shores of the Tiber. Romes history spans more than 2,500 years, while Roman mythology dates the founding of Rome at only around 753 BC, the site has been inhabited for much longer, making it one of the oldest continuously occupied sites in Europe. The citys early population originated from a mix of Latins, Etruscans and it was first called The Eternal City by the Roman poet Tibullus in the 1st century BC, and the expression was taken up by Ovid and Livy. Rome is called the Caput Mundi, due to that, Rome became first one of the major centres of the Italian Renaissance, and the birthplace of both the Baroque style and Neoclassicism.
Famous artists, painters and architects made Rome the centre of their activity, in 1871 Rome became the capital of the Kingdom of Italy, and in 1946 that of the Italian Republic. Rome has the status of a global city, Rome ranked in 2014 as the 14th-most-visited city in the world, 3rd most visited in the European Union, and the most popular tourist attraction in Italy. Its historic centre is listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site and museums such as the Vatican Museums and the Colosseum are among the worlds most visited tourist destinations with both locations receiving millions of tourists a year. Rome hosted the 1960 Summer Olympics and is the seat of United Nations Food, however, it is a possibility that the name Romulus was actually derived from Rome itself. As early as the 4th century, there have been alternate theories proposed on the origin of the name Roma. There is archaeological evidence of occupation of the Rome area from approximately 14,000 years ago. Evidence of stone tools and stone weapons attest to about 10,000 years of human presence, several excavations support the view that Rome grew from pastoral settlements on the Palatine Hill built above the area of the future Roman Forum.
Between the end of the age and the beginning of the Iron age. However, none of them had yet an urban quality, there is a wide consensus that the city was gradually born through the aggregation of several villages around the largest one, placed above the Palatine. All these happenings, which according to the excavations took place more or less around the mid of the 8th century BC. Despite recent excavations at the Palatine hill, the view that Rome has been indeed founded with an act of will as the legend suggests in the middle of the 8th century BC remains a fringe hypothesis. Traditional stories handed down by the ancient Romans themselves explain the earliest history of their city in terms of legend and myth
For the saint of the same name see Saint Maxentius Maxentius was Roman Emperor from 306 to 312. He was the son of former Emperor Maximian and the son-in-law of Emperor Galerius, the latter part of his reign was preoccupied with civil war, allying with Maximinus II against Licinius and Constantine. The latter defeated him at the Battle of the Milvian Bridge in 312, Maxentius exact date of birth is unknown, it was probably around 278. He was the son of the Emperor Maximian and his wife Eutropia, as his father became emperor in 285, he was regarded as crown prince who would eventually follow his father on the throne. He seems not to have served, however, in any important military or administrative position during the reign of Diocletian, the exact date of his marriage to Valeria Maximilla, daughter of Galerius, is unknown. He had two sons, Valerius Romulus and an unknown one, in 305, Diocletian and Maximian abdicated, and the former caesares Constantius and Galerius became Augusti. Although two sons of emperors were available and Maxentius, they were passed over for the new tetrarchy, Maxentius retired to an estate some miles from Rome.
When Constantius died in 306, his son Constantine was crowned emperor on July 25 and this set the precedent for Maxentius accession in the same year. Maxentius accepted the honour, promised donations to the citys troops, the usurpation obviously went largely without bloodshed, the prefect of Rome went over to Maxentius and retained his office. Apparently the conspirators turned to Maximian as well, who had retired to a palace in Lucania, Maxentius managed to be recognized as emperor in central and southern Italy, the islands of Corsica and Sardinia and Sicily, and the African provinces. Northern Italy remained under the control of the western Augustus Severus, Maxentius refrained from using the titles Augustus or Caesar at first and styled himself princeps invictus, in the hope of obtaining recognition of his reign by the senior emperor Galerius. However, the latter refused to do so, apart from his alleged antipathy towards Maxentius, Galerius probably wanted to deter others from following the examples of Constantine and Maxentius and declaring themselves emperors.
Galerius reckoned that it would be not too difficult to quell the usurpation, and early in 307, the Augustus Severus marched on Rome with a large army. When Maximian himself finally left his retreat and returned to Rome to assume the office once again and support his son. Shortly after he surrendered to Maximian, who promised that his life be spared, the joint rule of Maxentius and Maximian in Rome was tested further when Galerius himself marched to Italy in the summer of 307 with an even larger army. While negotiating with the invader, Maxentius could repeat what he did to Severus, by the promise of large sums of money, Galerius was forced to withdraw, plundering Italy on his way. Some time during the invasion, Severus was put to death by Maxentius, after the failed campaign of Galerius, Maxentius reign over Italy and Africa was firmly established. However, Constantine tried to avoid breaking with Galerius, and did not openly support Maxentius during the invasion
The Vandals are believed to have migrated from southern Scandinavia to the area between the lower Oder and Vistula rivers during the 2nd century BC and to have settled in Silesia from around 120 BC. They are associated with the Przeworsk culture and were possibly the people as the Lugii. Around 400 the Vandals were pushed westwards again, this time by the Huns, in 409, the Vandals crossed the Pyrenees into the Iberian Peninsula, where their main groups, the Hasdingi and the Silingi, settled in Gallaecia and Baetica respectively. In 429, under king Genseric, the Vandals entered North Africa, by 439 they established a kingdom which included the Roman province of Africa as well as Sicily, Sardinia and the Balearic Islands. They fended off several Roman attempts to recapture the African province and their kingdom collapsed in the Vandalic War of 533–4, in which Justinian I managed to reconquer the province for the Eastern Roman Empire. Renaissance and Early Modern writers characterized the Vandals as barbarians and looting Rome and this led to the use of the term vandalism to describe any senseless destruction, particularly the barbarian defacing of artwork.
However, modern historians tend to regard the Vandals during the period from Late Antiquity to the Early Middle Ages as perpetuators, not destroyers. The connection would be that Vendel is the homeland of the Vandals prior to the Migration Period. Further possible homelands of the Vandals in Scandinavia are Vendsyssel in Denmark, the etymology of the name may be related to a Germanic verb *wand- to wander. The Germanic mythological figure of Aurvandil shining wanderer, dawn wanderer, evening star, much has forwarded the theory that the tribal name Vandal reflects worship of Aurvandil or the Dioscuri, probably involving an origin myth that the Vandalic kings were descended from Aurvandil. Some medieval authors applied the ethnonym Vandals to Slavs, Wends and it was once thought that the Slovenes were the descendants of the Vandals, but this is not the view of modern scholars. The Vandals are believed to have migrated from southern Scandinavia to the area between the lower Oder and Vistula somewhere in the 2nd century BC, and to have settled in Silesia from around 120 BC.
The earliest mention of the Vandals is from Pliny the Elder, tribes within this category who he mentions are the Burgundiones, Varini and the Gutones. Most archaeologists and historians identify the Vandals with the Przeworsk culture, the bearers of the Przeworsk culture mainly practiced cremation, with occasional inhumation. The Lugii have been identified by historians as the same people as the Vandals. The Lugii are mentioned by Strabo and Ptolemy as a group of tribes living between the Vistula and the Oder. Neither Strabo, Tacitus or Ptolemy mentions the Vandals, while Pliny the Elder mentions the Vandals, according to John Anderson, the Lugii and Vandili are designations of the same tribal group, the latter an extended ethnic name, the former probably a cult-title. By the end of the 2nd century, the Vandals were divided in two main groups, the Silingi and the Hasdingi, with the Silingi being associated with Silesia
Aqua Claudia was an ancient Roman aqueduct that, like the Anio Novus, was begun by Emperor Caligula in 38 AD and finished by Emperor Claudius in 52 AD. Together with the Aqua Anio Vetus, Aqua Anio Novus, and its main springs, the Caeruleus and Curtius, were situated 300 paces to the left of the 38th milestone of the Via Sublacensis. The total length was 45–46 miles most of which was underground, the flow was about 190000 cubic metres in 24 hours. Directly after its filtering tank, near the mile of the Via Latina, it finally emerged onto arches. It is one of the two ancient aqueducts that flowed through the Porta Maggiore, the other being the Anio Novus and it is described in some detail by Frontinus in his work published in the 1st century, De aquaeductu. Nero extended the aqueduct with the Arcus Neroniani to the Caelian hill, the aqueduct went through at least two major repairs. It was said that the Aqua Claudia was used for 10 years, the first repair was done by Emperor Vespasian in 71 AD, it was repaired again in 81 AD by Emperor Titus.
The Aqua Claudia maintained its structure and appearance for so long partly because of roman pozzolana mortar
It drains a basin estimated at 17,375 square kilometres. The river has achieved lasting fame as the watercourse of the city of Rome. The river rises at Mount Fumaiolo in central Italy and flows in a southerly direction past Perugia. However, it does not form a delta, owing to a strong north-flowing sea current close to the shore, to the steep shelving of the coast. The source of the Tiber consists of two springs 10 metres away from each other on Mount Fumaiolo and these springs are called Le Vene. The springs are in a beech forest 1,268 metres above sea level, during the 1930s, Benito Mussolini placed an antique marble Roman column at the point where the river arises, inscribed QUI NASCE IL FIUME SACRO AI DESTINI DI ROMA. There is an eagle on the top of this column, the first miles of the Tiber run through Valtiberina before entering Umbria. It is probable that the genesis of the name Tiber was pre-Latin, like the Roman name of Tibur, the same root is found in the Latin praenomen Tiberius. There are Etruscan variants of this praenomen in Thefarie and Teperie, the legendary king Tiberinus, ninth in the king-list of Alba Longa, was said to have drowned in the river Albula, which was afterward called Tiberis.
Yet another etymology is from *dubri-, considered by Alessio as Sicel and this root *dubri- is widespread in Western Europe e. g. Dover, Portus Dubris. According to the legend, Jupiter made him a god and guardian spirit of the river and this gave rise to the standard Roman depiction of the river as a powerfully built reclining god, named Tiberinus, with streams of water flowing from his hair and beard. The Tiber was believed to be the river into which Romulus and Remus were thrown as infants, according to legend, the city of Rome was founded in 753 BC on the banks of the Tiber about 25 kilometres from the sea at Ostia. The island Isola Tiberina in the centre of Rome, between Trastevere and the ancient center, was the site of an important ancient ford and was bridged. Legend says Romes founders, the twin brothers Romulus and Remus, were abandoned on its waters, the river marked the boundary between the lands of the Etruscans to the west, the Sabines to the east and the Latins to the south. Benito Mussolini, born in Romagna, adjusted the boundary between Tuscany and Emilia-Romagna, so that the springs of the Tiber would lie in Romagna and it was used to ship stone and foodstuffs to Rome.
During the Punic Wars of the 3rd century BC, the harbour at Ostia became a key naval base and it became Romes most important port, where wheat, olive oil, and wine were imported from Romes colonies around the Mediterranean. Wharves were built along the riverside in Rome itself, lining the riverbanks around the Campus Martius area, the Romans connected the river with a sewer system and with an underground network of tunnels and other channels, to bring its water into the middle of the city. Wealthy Romans had garden-parks or horti on the banks of the river in Rome up through the first century BC and these may have been sold and developed about a century later
The Early Roman army of the Roman Kingdom and of the early Republic. During this period, when warfare chiefly consisted of small-scale plundering raids, it has suggested that the Roman Army followed Etruscan or Greek models of organisation. The early Roman army was based on an annual levy, the infantry ranks were filled with the lower classes while the cavalry were left to the patricians, because the wealthier could afford horses. Moreover, the authority during the regal period was the high king. Until the establishment of the Republic and the office of consul, from about 508 BC Rome no longer had a king. The commanding position of the army was given to the consuls, the term legion is derived from the Latin word legio, which ultimately means draft or levy. At first there were only four legions and these legions were numbered I to IIII, with the fourth being written as such and not IV. The first legion was seen as the most prestigious, the latter being a recurring theme in many elements of the Roman army.
The bulk of the army was made up of citizens and these citizens could not choose the legion to which they were allocated. Any man from ages 16-46 were selected by ballot and assigned to a legion, until the Roman military disaster of 390 BC at the Battle of the Allia, Romes army was organised similarly to the Greek Phalanx. This was due to Greek influence in Italy by way of their colonies, patricia Southern quotes ancient historians Livy and Dionysius in saying that the phalanx consisted of 3,000 infantry and 300 cavalry. Each man had to provide his equipment in battle, the equipment which he could afford determined which position he took in the battle. Politically they shared the ranking system in the Comitia Centuriata. The Roman army of the mid-Republic was known as the army or the Polybian army after the Greek historian Polybius. The latter were required to roughly the same number of troops to joint forces as the Romans to serve under Roman command. Legions in this phase were always accompanied on campaign by the number of allied alae.
After the 2nd Punic War, the Romans acquired an overseas empire and these volunteers were mainly from the poorest social class, who did not have plots to tend at home and were attracted by the modest military pay and the prospect of a share of war booty. The minimum property requirement for service in the legions, which had been suspended during the 2nd Punic War, was effectively ignored from 201 BC onward in order to recruit sufficient volunteers
Pyramid of Cestius
The Pyramid of Cestius is an ancient pyramid in Rome, near the Porta San Paolo and the Protestant Cemetery. It stands at a fork between two ancient roads, the Via Ostiensis and another road ran west to the Tiber along the approximate line of the modern Via della Marmorata. Due to its incorporation into the fortifications, it is today one of the best-preserved ancient buildings in Rome. The pyramid was built about 18–12 BC as a tomb for Gaius Cestius, a magistrate and member of one of the four great religious corporations in Rome and it is of brick-faced concrete covered with slabs of white marble standing on a travertine foundation. The pyramid measures 100 Roman feet square at the base and stands 125 Roman feet high, in the interior is the burial chamber, a simple barrel-vaulted rectangular cavity measuring 5.95 metres long,4.10 m wide and 4.80 m high. When opened in 1660, the chamber was found to be decorated with frescoes, only scant traces of these frescoes survive, and no trace of any other contents.
The tomb had been sealed when it was built, with no exterior entrance, until the end of restoration works in 2015, it was not possible for visitors to access the interior, except by special permission typically only granted to scholars. Since the beginning of May 2015, the pyramid is open to the every second. Visitors must arrange their visit in advance, a dedicatory inscription is carved into the east and west flanks of the pyramid, so as to be visible from both sides. Reading INSTAVRATVM · AN · DOMINI · MDCLXIII, it commemorates excavation and restoration carried out in. At the time of its construction, the Pyramid of Cestius would have stood in open countryside, Rome grew enormously during the imperial period, and, by the 3rd century AD, the pyramid would have been surrounded by buildings. It originally stood in an enclosure, flanked by statues, columns. Two marble bases were found next to the pyramid during excavations in the 1660s, the heirs had set up the statues and bases using money raised from the sale of valuable cloths.
Cestius had stated in his will that the cloths were to be deposited in the tomb, the sharply pointed shape of the pyramid is strongly reminiscent of the pyramids of Nubia, in particular of the kingdom of Meroë, which had been attacked by Rome in 23 BC. The similarity suggests that Cestius had possibly served in that campaign, some writers have questioned whether the Roman pyramids were modelled on the much less steeply pointed Egyptian pyramids exemplified by the famous pyramids of Giza. The pyramid was, in any case, built during a period when Rome was going through a fad for all things Egyptian, during the construction of the Aurelian Walls between 271 and 275, the pyramid was incorporated into the walls to form a triangular bastion. It was one of many structures in the city to be reused to form part of the new walls, probably to reduce the cost and it still forms part of a well-preserved stretch of the walls, a short distance from the Porta San Paolo. The origins of the pyramid were forgotten during the Middle Ages, the inhabitants of Rome came to believe that it was the tomb of Remus and that its counterpart near the Vatican was the tomb of Romulus, a belief recorded by Petrarch