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In the Centre of the World – Part one

A visit to the Forum in a journey back in time to the grandeur and glory of the roman civilization, according to an article in the sunday Telegraph by Claire Tomalin, who is a great admirer of the city and its millenia of history.

The Roman Forum is one of the best preserved areas of the city and contains the most important traces of the history of Rome. The ruins from various periods have accompanied, since 600 BC, the changes in the public, religious and economic life of ancient rome.

colosseum and forum

The forum, set in a valley amid the seven hills, was originally a swamp; at the end of the 7th century BC the land was drained and the first buildings of the roman forum were erected, creating what would become the centre of the roman public life over a thousand years.


Work continued over the centuries with the addiction of buildings for public, religious and commercial purposes. These were followed by the civil basilacas for judicial activities. By the end of the republican age the old roman forum was not large enough to be the administrative and representative centre of the city.

The area was thus enlarged by various dynasties of emperors with buildings of great prestige: the temple of Vespasian and Titus, the temple of Antoninus Pius and Faustina, dedicated to the memory of the deified emperors, and the monumental Arch of septimus Severus celebrating the emperor’s victories over the Parthians.

Book your Walking tour of the Ancient Rome here

The Roman Forum, also known by its Latin name Forum Romanum (Italian: Foro Romano), is a rectangular forum (plaza) surrounded by the ruins of several important ancient government buildings at the center of the city of Rome. Citizens of the ancient city referred to this space, originally a marketplace, as the Forum Magnum, or simply the Forum.