Welcome to the new Travels-series, where you get to know all sorts of places to travel and what makes them so fascinating and beautiful.
In the first article of this series we start off with Rome, the capital of the ancient world. Home to the Colosseum, the Vatican, the Forum Romanum, the Trevi Fountain, the Pantheon, Piazza Navona, the Spanish Steps, Palatine Hill and much more. These days Rome is the fourth-most populous city in the European Union and is the capital of Italy as you probably already know. However you’re not reading this to be reminded of what you already knew, you’re here because we’re offering you information you probably didn’t know before.
The origins of Rome: Palatine Hill
Did you know that the first evidence of human occupation of Rome dates back to approcimately 14000 years ago? That makes the city more than 10000 years older, before it became known as the Roman capitol (753 BC). The first settlement was build on Palatine Hill, the centremost one of the seven hills of Rome. The word “palace” itself comes from Palatine Hill. In this settlement the pre-Romans lived for thousands of years. Part of their culture was to celebrate the Lupercalia, an annual festival known as “Februa” (purifications), to avert evil spirits and purify the city, releasing health and fertility. This is where the month February earns its name, for the festival was held annually in what now the month February is.
Photos: Palatine Hill in Rome
In mythology, Palatine Hill was the location of the cave known as Lupercal, where Romulus and Remus were found by the wolf Lupa that kept them alive and raised them. Later Romulus and Remus would found the city of Rome on Palatine Hill itself.
Photo: Romulus and Remus with the she-wolf Lupa
Palatine Hill through the ages
The pre-Romans and the early-Romans had their settlements on Palatine Hill, where the Roman Kingdom (753 – 509 BC) finds its origin. During this Regal period Rome had its settlements around Palatine Hill along the river Tiber. Later during the Republican period (Roman Republic 509 – 44 BC) many of the wealthy Romans and administrators had their residences there. In 27 BC, Emperor Augustus built his palace on Palatine Hill and the hill became the exclusive domain of emperors during the rest of the Roman Empire (27 BC – 395 AD).
Photo: Rome at noon
Outlook on Rome
For millenia, Palatine Hill has stand 40 metres above what is now the Forum Romanum, looking down upon it on one side, and upon the Circus Maximus on the other. In ancient times the whole of Rome could be seen from there. It was the place where the builders of the Roman civilization resided, where emperors were housed as if they were living gods. It is home to several ancient temples, houses and palaces.
The Palatine Hill is now an archaeological site open to the public.
Photo: the Forum Romanum in Rome
There is much more to share with you about Rome, and much more to be seen there. But then we’d have to write a library of information to tell you all of that. So the best option would be to travel there and experience it all yourself, it is highly recommended! And by far the most fascinating, beautiful and extraordinary exciting place I’ve ever been in my life.
Written and brought to you by GentlemansTravels. Not any credits are taken for the used photo’s.
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