Arch of Constantine

Rome, Italy

The Arch of Constantine is situated between the Colosseum and the Palatine Hill. It was erected by the Roman Senate to commemorate Constantine I's victory over Maxentius at the Battle of Milvian Bridge in 312. Dedicated in 315, it is the largest Roman triumphal arch. The arch spans the Via triumphalis, the way taken by the emperors when they entered the city in triumph.

Though dedicated to Constantine, much of the decorative material incorporated earlier work from the time of the emperors Trajan (98-117), Hadrian (117-138) and Marcus Aurelius (161-180), and is thus a collage. The last of the existing triumphal arches in Rome, it is also the only one to make extensive use of spolia, reusing several major reliefs from 2nd century imperial monuments, which give a striking and famous stylistic contrast to the sculpture newly created for the arch.

The arch is 21 m high, 25.9 m wide and 7.4 m deep. Above the archways is placed the attic, composed of brickwork reveted (faced) with marble. A staircase within the arch is entered from a door at some height from the ground, on the west side, facing the Palatine Hill. The general design with a main part structured by detached columns and an attic with the main inscription above is modelled after the example of the Arch of Septimius Severus on the Roman Forum.

References:

Comments

Your name

Website (optional)



Details

Founded: 315 AD
Category: Prehistoric and archaeological sites in Italy

Rating

4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Samvel Khudoyan (5 months ago)
The arc kind of links Colosseum with Roman Forum. Nice place to pose for a picture.
João Manuel Miranda (5 months ago)
A great example of the roman empire work in a city full of history and mother of a civilization. One of the many masterpieces. An imposing monument.
Kim Tingkær (6 months ago)
Was our meeting place with the guide to go to Colosseum. The Arch it self is part of the whole experiense and story. Nice.
Jam Yoo (6 months ago)
Four stars because we’ve never actually been there but Barbara D says who has been, “cool arc. But what is an arc? Nice architecture.” Barbara DMs son who is an architect says who’s been there as well “any architect would be astonished...:)”
Mort Schubert (12 months ago)
This is an architectural wonder. Wonderful in itself. Too bad it is fenced in so one cannot move close to, and around, it. Also, the place is very dusty. Forget about going back to your hotel in clean shoes and clothes! No benches to rest on! If you need to sit frequently, either you sit on the pavement or some patch of rare, dirty grass or this is not the place for you. Too many visitors during the day; best to go there in late afternoon. This is also the time brides show up for their wedding album shooting session. Once again: an amazing construction; totally worth the effort. Allot it more than five minutes (probably, what a guide will say you need); we spent more than an hour there and felt we could return for more. Maybe, as soon as next year!
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Het Steen

Het Steen is a medieval fortress in the old city centre of Antwerp. Built after the Viking incursions in the early Middle Ages as the first stone fortress of Antwerp, Het Steen is Antwerp's oldest building and used to be its oldest urban centre.

Previously known as Antwerpen Burcht (fortress), Het Steen gained its current name in around 1520, after significant rebuilding under Charles V. The fortress made it possible to control the access to the Scheldt, the river on whose bank it stands. It was used as a prison between 1303 and 1827. The largest part of the fortress, including dozens of historic houses and the oldest church of the city, was demolished in the 19th century when the quays were straightened to stop the silting up of the Scheldt. The remaining building, heavily changed, contains a shipping museum, with some old canal barges displayed on the quay outside.

In 1890 Het Steen became the museum of archeology and in 1952 an annex was added to house the museum of Antwerp maritime history, which in 2011 moved to the nearby Museum Aan de Stroom. Here you’ll also find a war memorial to the Canadian soldiers in WWII.

There are some beautiful plaques on the back side of the Steen Castle at Antwerp. Canadian visitors will especially want to see the plaques thanking the Royal Hamilton Light Infantry for their part in the liberation of Antwerp, in 1944.

At the entrance to Het Steen is a bas-relief of Semini, above the archway, around 2nd century. Semini is the Scandinavian God of youth and fertility (with symbolic phallus). A historical plaque near Het Steen explains that women of the town appealed to Semini when they desired children; the god was reviled by later religious clergy. Inhabitants of Antwerp previously referred to themselves as 'children of Semini'.

At the entrance bridge to the castle is a statue of a giant and two humans. It depicts the giant Lange Wapper who used to terrorise the inhabitants of the city in medieval times.