Curia Julia (Senate House) and Lapis Niger

"Curia Julia (Senate House) and Lapis Niger" submitted by RomeTour Editorial Team and last updated on Wednesday 29th June 2011

The big stone construction of Curia Julia was brought to the light in the 30's of this century after the 7th century church Chiesa di S.Adriano, erected over it, was destroyed. During the Roman Republic, Roman senators met together in their senate house, which was known as the curia, a building whose history predates the Republic.

Curia Julia (Senate House)
Caesar built it to substitute demolished by fire Curia Hostilia. Curia Julia was completed by Augustus in 29 b.C. and reconstructed in 94 A.D by Domitian. The interior 27m long, 18m wide and 21m high discovered and restored in 1930-1934 by Alfonso Bartoli, the pavement of the hall still preserves the original marbles.

The three broad marble-faced steps on the two long sides provided seats for some 300 senators. The existing doors are copies of the originals removed by Alexander VII to St John Lateran. To big marble relieves exposed here represent the scenes from the epoch of Trajan. In front of the Curia there are numerous bases of honor statues erected here in the imperial epoch.

The building, wonderfully preserved, owes this to the conversion into the Church of Sant'Adriano in the 7th century CE. The remains of byzantine wall paintings are from this period. On July 10, 1923 the Italian government acquired the Curia Julia and the adjacent convent of the Church of S. Adriano from the Collegio di Spagna The church was demolished in the 1930s and the building restored to its 4th century appearance. The Curia Julia houses the Plutei of Trajan, two marble reliefs found in the main square of the Forum. It is usually possible to see the Curia inside, though it is not always open.

Lapis Niger

Close to the Curia, under the tract of the 6th century b.C. pavement of the black stones, in 1899 was discovered a complex archaic monument, with an ancient inscription on a square stele on all four sides (providing the most ancient example of the Latin language), a warning against profaning a holy place. Here the tomb of Romulus or of some other deified founder of the city was identified.

Address:
Curia Julia (Senate House) and Lapis Niger
Via della Curia
00186 , Rome, Lazio, Italy
Zone: Rione Campitelli (Foro Romano- Campidoglio-P.Venezia) (Roma centro)
Curia Julia (Senate House) and Lapis Niger is Shown By "Map K Zone" As "10"
Contact and Booking, Entrance, Hours, Public transport and Other Essential: Visit Roman Forum

Ref.:
http://dlib.etc.ucla.edu/projects/Forum/reconstructions/CuriaIulia_1
http://www.livius.org/ct-cz/curia/julia.html

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