Forum of Caesar

Rome, Italy

The Forum of Caesar (Foro di Cesare) was built by Julius Caesar near the Forum Romanum in Rome in 46 BC. Caesar decided to construct a forum bearing his name in the northeast section of the Forum Romanum, of which he purchased a very expensive, select amount of parcels of land in that area. The Forum spanned from the Argiletum on the southeast side of the Forum Romanum to the Atrium Libertatis and spanned 160 meters by 75 meters. As part of the dedication, lavish games were offered and funded by Caesar, indicating the staggering cost and thus the personal interest that Caesar had invested in the project.

The Forum of Caesar originally meant an expansion of the Forum Romanum. The Forum, however, evolved so that it served two additional purposes. As Caesar became more and more involved in this project, the Forum became a place for public business that was related to the Senate in addition to a shrine for Caesar himself as well as Venus Genetrix.

Before his assassination, Caesar would have the Senate meet him before his temple, an act deemed very unpopular by the Senate. The Forum of Caesar also had an effect on the Curia, which Caesar began to reconstruct in 44 BC. This reconstruction moved the Forum of Caesar much closer to the Curia. The ten tabernae located on the western side of the Forum and its now close approximation to the Senate house symbolized the unity that Caesar felt between himself and the Senate.

Caesar also placed a statue of his favourite horse in front of the temple. Following his assassination, a statue of Caesar riding this horse was added. The Temple of Venus Genetrix was completed after Caesar's assassination by Roman senators, which included lavish games in reference to Caesar's original dedication to the Forum. Caesar had plans for this temple well in advance, having dedicated the construction of a temple to Venus Victrix at the climactic Battle of Pharsalus in 48 BC, though never being able to see its completion. This original dedication was done because it was Pompey's favourite goddess, and Caesar hoped to gain the goddess's favour before the battle against Pompey.

The temple was re-built after the removal of the gap between the Capitoline Hill and the Quirinal Hill, under the reigns of Domitian and Trajan; during the adaptation of the gap, a second floor of tabernae was created behind the west portico of the square and a building with pillars made of tuff blocks, named Basilica Argentaria, was erected. The new temple was inaugurated in the same day as the Trajan's Column, on May 12, 113.

Following the reigns of Caesar and Augustus, a total reconstruction of the Forum took place, headed by the Roman Emperor Domitian. Why this reconstruction occurred is not exactly known. Under the reign of Titus, a massive fire ravaged the city in AD 80, including the Forum Romanum. The Forum of Caesar was not rebuilt until AD 95, however, indicating that perhaps Domitian had a personal interest in the reconstruction. This could be seen in the separation of the Curia from the Forum, symbolizing a reversal of Caesar's wish to have the Senate closely connected with him. Not much senatorial business took place in the Forum afterwards, except for the secretarium senatus in the 4th century.

References:

Comments

Your name



Address

Clivo Argentario, Rome, Italy
See all sites in Rome

Details

Founded: 46 BC
Category: Prehistoric and archaeological sites in Italy

Rating

4.8/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

giulia oliva (6 months ago)
The audio guide tour during the evening is awesome
Livia Viscardi (6 months ago)
My partner and I attended the night tour, we had a great time & learnt a lot. It was awesome getting access underground through the old tunnels and seeing the ruins alight. The staff were lovely. Highly recommend.
Mario Di Cesare (6 months ago)
Thank you all for the wonderful reviews of the family forum.
Juan Mora (9 months ago)
It is a beautiful place, they conserved the old construction and I only can imagine how I would looks thousand years ago.
Alex Haas (10 months ago)
The Foro di Cesare (or Forum Iulium or Forum Julium, Forum Caesaris) dates back to 46BC. That's more than 2000 years of history looking at you. Even though a lot is in ruins, there is indeed a lot to see still. Thought originally to be an expansion of the Forum Romanum this place later on had two additional purposes: a place for public business that was related to the Senate in addition to a shrine for Caesar himself. It's a really impressive sight and must have been breathtaking back in its day. Well, it still IS to this day. And then there you also got the Chiesa Santi Luca e Martina martiri, the Curia Iulia, the Chiesa di San Giuseppe dei Falegnami, the Largo Romolo e Remo, the Tempio di Venere Genitrice, the Tempio della Pace and the Statua di Cesare of the man himself on site. A very rewarding visit. Especially if you have the time to get to know the history and background a bit. Be it by book, by the plaques around the site or by a guided tour. Surely a must-do when in Rome.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Tyniec Abbey

Tyniec Benedictine abbey was founded by King Casimir the Restorer probably around 1044. Casimir decided to rebuild the newly established Kingdom of Poland, after a Pagan rebellion and a disastrous Czech raid of Duke Bretislaus I (1039). The Benedictines, invited to Tyniec by the King, were tasked with restoring order as well as cementing the position of the State and the Church. First Tyniec Abbot was Aaron, who became the Bishop of Kraków. Since there is no conclusive evidence to support the foundation date as 1040, some historians claim that the abbey was founded by Casimir the Restorer’ son, King Boleslaw II the Generous.

In the second half of the 11th century, a complex of Romanesque buildings was completed, consisting of a basilica and the abbey. In the 14th century, it was destroyed in Tatar and Czech raids, and in the 15th century it was rebuilt in Gothic style. Further remodelings took place in the 17th and 18th centuries, first in Baroque, then in Rococo style. The abbey was partly destroyed in the Swedish invasion of Poland, and soon afterwards was rebuilt, with a new library. Further destruction took place during the Bar Confederation, when Polish rebels turned the abbey into their fortress.

In 1816, Austrian authorities liquidated the abbey, and in 1821-1826, it was the seat of the Bishop of Tyniec, Grzegorz Tomasz Ziegler. The monks, however, did not return to the abbey until 1939, and in 1947, remodelling of the neglected complex was initiated. In 1968, the Church of St. Peter and Paul was once again named the seat of the abbot. The church itself consists of a Gothic presbytery and a Baroque main nave. Several altars were created by an 18th-century Italian sculptor Francesco Placidi. The church also has a late Baroque pulpit by Franciszek Jozef Mangoldt.