Monday, January 23, 2012

The Pantheon

Today I wandered once again in to the Piazza della Rotonda to check out the Pantheon, and to get some Gelato. This time, however, I ventured inside, which costs nothing. The entire fa├žade is made of granite and the dome is made of concrete, and remains the largest non-reinforced concrete dome in the world. Inside, the carved squares in the domes interior exaggerate the already magnificent arches that meet at an open oculus at the top.

Marcus Agrippa first built a Pantheon on this site in 27 BC but the current building was not constructed, during the fourth and final attempt, until 126 AD by Emperor Hadrian. The interior floor is entirely marble and the walls hold a collection of old Christian and Italian artifacts, including a memorial to Victor Emmanuel II and the tomb of Raphael. An amazing building and one of the oldest remaining structures in Rome. 

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