Rome - Italy

RomeThe Arch of Constantine

The Arch of Constantine is the largest triumphal and honorary arch in Rome, located in the ancient Via Dei Trionfi, a short distance from the Colosseum. The arch was erected to commemorate the victory of Costantino I over Massenzio during the Battle of Ponte Milvio (28th October 312). The arch was built between 130 and 138 d.c. During the building of the Arch, Constantine had not chosen Christianity as the official religion of the roman empire yet, so the traditional cross appeared in the sky during the battle of Ponte Milvio with the saying: "In Hoc Signo win" is a later legend of the Catholic church. In fact the emperor, who had given freedom of worship to the Roman Empire in 313, participated only in 325 at the Council of Nicaea, and above all, he never converted to Christianity, not even on his deathbed.


Rome - The Arch of Constantine"Divine inspiration" and the architecture

Among the arch reliefs, there are scenes of sacrifices to pagan gods and deities busts: despite the inscription “instinctu divinitatis” (by divine inspiration), Constantine probably maintained a certain equidistance between religions, for reasons of political interest.

The monument has a square shape, made by marble pillars. Above the archways is placed the attic, composed of brickwork reveted with marble. A staircase within the arch is entered from a door at some height from the ground, on the west side, facing the Palatine Hill.

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