Rome, Italy

The Pantheon (meaning 'temple of every god') is a former Roman temple, now a church, on the site of an earlier temple commissioned by Marcus Agrippa during the reign of Augustus (27 BC-14 AD). The present building was completed by the emperor Hadrian and probably dedicated about 126 AD. He retained Agrippa's original inscription, which has confused its date of construction as the original Pantheon burnt down so it is not certain when the present one was built.

The building is circular with a portico of large granite Corinthian columns under a pediment. A rectangular vestibule links the porch to the rotunda, which is under a coffered concrete dome, with a central opening (oculus) to the sky. Almost two thousand years after it was built, the Pantheon's dome is still the world's largest unreinforced concrete dome. The height to the oculus and the diameter of the interior circle are the same, 43.3 metres.

Pantheon is one of the best-preserved of all Ancient Roman buildings. The Pantheon's large circular domed cella, with a conventional temple portico front, is 'unique' in Roman architecture. Nevertheless, it became a standard exemplar when classical styles were revived, and has been copied many times by modern architects.

Pantheon was converted into the church of St. Mary of the Martyrs in 608 CE. In 1270 a bell tower was added to the porch roof and later removed. Also, at some time in the Middle Ages the left side of the porch was damaged which necessitated the replacement of three columns. The first came from Domitian's villa at Castelgandolfo and was added in 1626. The other two columns came from the Baths of Nero and were added in 1666. However, these additions were rose-pink in colour whilst originally the front eight columns of the porch were all grey and only the internal four were pink Aswan. Also in 1626 Pope Urban VIII removed all of the bronze girders from the porch roof and recast the metal into 80 canons for the city's Castel Sant'Angelo. The presence of these girders suggests that the porch roof originally had heavy marble tiles.

Despite these changes the Pantheon is one of the best preserved ancient monuments in the world and it still has an important function and status today as within it are the tombs of the Italian monarchy from 1870-1946 and another notable tomb is that of Raphael (1483-1520 CE).

Pantheon is visited by over 6 million people annually. It is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Historic Centre of Rome.



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Founded: 126 AD
Category: Religious sites in Italy


4.8/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Sumanta Chakraborty (8 months ago)
Wonderful. It looks very old, lots of fractured beams, wooden roof also has wear and tears. But the idea is amazing. The ceiling has a big hole and sunlight comes through it and illuminates the interior. The entrance is free and there is in general a small line, thus going inside should not be a problem. Worth visit when in Rome.
Ghassan Yammine (14 months ago)
A unique architecture. A huge monument. One of the most iconic sites in the eternal city! The light coming from the ceiling is magical. All spots in this place deserve to be visited. A special advice: stay in the middle of the pantheon and look at the sky and feel the magic of the clouds and the sky. A must see place!
R M L (17 months ago)
Very impressive and with lots of history inside and outside. Not sure with the entrance requirements ( 1st July 2022). Sometimes you just show up and can go inside and other days you need a prior booking. To be sure best book in advance if you are planning, or size the opportunity if you're paying by and see no queue.
Jakub Grzybowski (20 months ago)
A beautiful place with classical architecture. I recommend you see it with your own eyes. You must have a reservation on weekends, but during the week there is no problem with getting in. It is worth taking a look inside because there is something to see there. Everything is in perfect condition, beautiful sculptures and paintings. The perfect place to start exploring Rome.
Ardi Tooki (22 months ago)
Astonishing beautiful! There is no word to describe this building. It is one of a kind landmark in architecture world. If you are an architect or have a neck for buildings and visit this place then u’ll know what I’m talking about! It’s just perfect!
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