Roman Architecture

Roman architecture has always been admired for its strong and colossal structure. Throne’s power and the ordinary lives of its citizens have greatly inspired the majestic architecture. The grand temples and buildings demonstrate the perpetual influence of gods over the people. Architecture has widely contributed to the European art and culture. It has been observed that the architecture Romans were influenced was from Greek’s art. The designs on Roman buildings were relatively similar to Greeks architectural designs. Though, the architecture was identical, Romans preferred Corinthian Order. Another characteristic feature that set its architecture apart was its continuous urge of perfecting concrete buildings in all of its monumental creations with modern arches and domes as a modern touch.

Roman Colosseum is the largest and most famous amphitheater of Rome. Its construction began in 72 AD under Emperor Vespasian and finished in 80 AD under his son Titus. It was built with materials like travertine limestone, tuff, wood, concrete. This colosseum has a seating capacity of 50,000 and more. Gladiatorial competitions, battles, executions, roman mythology dramas were conducted for entertainment purposes. Compared to other amphitheaters, Colosseum was built in the heart of the city. However, the interior of Colosseum was profoundly destroyed by fires and earthquakes. Even though, the structural standing of the monument is still sound, the pollution and general destruction has deteriorated the inner part of the structure.

Pantheon is a Roman temple built during 113 to 125 AD. It has dome structure with traditional porch. It served as a Roman Catholic Church. This monument stands on brick arches and hidden wall niches. The temple’s structure has survived because of its well-engineered walls and domes. The interior is refined with polished marble that shines when sunlight penetrates through the ceiling, which is called the Oculus, also known as ‘great eye. Being unique in all of Romans architectural creations, its interior and exterior classical designs have been adapted by architects.

Arch of Constantine was built in honor of Constantine’s triumph over Maxentius at the Battle of Milivian Bridge in 312 AD. Arch of Constantine is a glorious celebration of political power and leadership. It is well-known for geometric details and massive stone work. Lower part is covered with marble blocks and extraordinary marble brickwork. It is 20 meters high, 25 meters wide and 7 meters deep. In the main archway, victory figure occupy spandrels and river gods are depicted over the arches.  Emperor Marcus Aurelius’s life was carved on the arches which was remodeled to resemble Constantine I. It signifies Constantine’s changing religious affirmations.

Arch of Titus was built in 81 AD by Emperor Domitian that commemorates Titus’s and his father’s victor over Jewish rebellion in Judea. It measures 15.4 meters in height. The upper left and right of arches contains a winged woman that personifies victory. Temple of Jerusalem is partially depicted on south inner panels. North inner pane portrays Titus as the Triumphator, where there is an Amazonian wearing a helmet leading four horses carries Titus. The inscriptions on the horse were mainly written in gold or silver.

Roman architecture signifies beauty of triumph and rich culture. Roman culture has splendidly attracted people to experience the foundation of Roman history with astounding work of art that continues to inspire today’s architects.

Categories: Culture and History

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