Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Rome: Musei Capitolini

Today was our last day in Italy, and the last thing on Ed's list was a visit to the Capitoline Museum, so off we went.

The Capitoline Hill is the smallest hill in Rome and was originally made up of two parts (the Capitolium and the Arx) separated by a deep valley which corresponds to where Piazza del Campidoglio now stands about 8 meters above the original site. The creation of the Capitoline Museums has been traced back to 1471, when Pope Sixtus IV donated a group of bronze statues to the people of Rome.

We started out by perusing the epigraphic collection, an exhibit on ancient languages that were spoken throughout the Roman Empire; in many cases, objects were engraved with multiple languages, such as Hebrew and Latin. The exhibit featured inscribed funerary tables, tombstones, and altars, among other items. Here, you can see very small inscriptions in the base of the object; often, the inscriptions were carved on multiple sides, sometimes even all all four sides:

From Rome & Vatican City (December 2014)

From a few floors up, we also saw a beautiful view of the Forum from the museum.

From Rome & Vatican City (December 2014)

We saw many, many gorgeous statues and engravings throughout the museum, in many cases entire rooms dedicated to specific collections. This was taken in the Hall of the Doves, which owes its name to one of the two mosaics herein exhibited, found in Hadrian's Villa at Tivoli. Featured in this room, though, is a marble statue of a young girl with a dove, which was from a Hellenistic original of the 3rd-2nd century B.C. (That one guy in the background keeps popping up wherever I go.)

From Rome & Vatican City (December 2014)

It was actually a bit overwhelming, the sheer number of beautiful statues displayed. Statues tended to be thematically grouped, such as in the Hall of Emperors, or in this case, the Grand Salon.

From Rome & Vatican City (December 2014)

There were also some beautiful religious artworks displayed from the Middle Ages and Renaissance, such as Giovanni Antonio Sogliani's 16th century "Madonna with Child and Angels" (oil on wood).

From Rome & Vatican City (December 2014)

No comments:

Post a Comment