Your first taste of ancient Rome should start from a point that embodies some of Rome's earliest and greatest moments: the Campidoglio. Here, on the Capitoline Hill (which towers over the traffic hub of Piazza Venezia), a meditative Edward Gibbon was inspired to write his 1764 tome, The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. Of Rome's famous seven hills, the Capitoline is the smallest and the most sacred. It has always been the seat of Rome's government, and its Latin name echoes in the designation of the national and state capitol buildings of every country in the world.


Carcere Mamertino

The state prison of the Middle Ages has two subterranean cells where Rome's enemies, most famously the Goth, Jugurtha, and…

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Tarpeian Rock

In ancient Rome, traitors were hurled to their deaths from here. In the 18th and 19th centuries, the Tarpeian Rock…

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Palazzo Senatorio

During the Middle Ages, this city hall looked like those you might see in Tuscan hill towns: part fortress and…

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