The remainder of the Longest Week Ever (I exaggerate, kind of) was spent concentrating on the Augustan, Julio-Claudian, and Flavian modifications and additions to Rome’s topography.
Wednesday we spent some time in the Forum discussing additions to the Forum by Julius Caesar and Augustus as well as the Forum of Augustus including the Curia and several basilicae. We then made our way to the Ara Pacis Museum where I *finally* got to see the Ara Pacis, the Mausoleum of Augustus as well as the overall plan of the Campus Martius under Augustus.
Thursday was a much needed slow day in the Academy where we attended lectures usually reserved for Monday.
Friday we boarded a bus for Terracina and Sperlonga, another long-awaited trip that I was glad to do. At Terracina, we explored the Temple of Jupiter Anxur and enjoyed magnificent views available from the sanctuary precinct. We then journeyed on to Sperlonga where we visited Tiberius’s villa and grotto and I finally got to see the sculptural remains that were found within the grotto. After the Sperlonga museum we went to Sperlonga town so those of us who wanted to beach could do so and those of us that wanted to laze could do so. I lazed; I enjoyed a delicious meal and some delicious caffe gelato with an exceptional view of the water.
Saturday was a hot day where we went to the Palatine to see the imperial residences: the houses of Augustus and Livia, the Domus Flaviana, and earlier Republican era houses were all on the docket. After lunch, we put on our hard hats and explored the newly re-opened Domus Aurea which was blessedly cool (68 degrees – The Italian guide was very concerned that we didn’t have wraps, but we were all like ‘mmmm naw we’re good’).
The next week will continue our discussion and exploration of imperial Rome! Today (Monday – Day 26) is at the Academy for our lectures and seminars.
The forecast for the next week is “as hot as Hades” 😦
This blog was originally posted here, with pictures!