"Temple of Venus and Roma" Roman Forum - Temple of Venus and Roma Tip by jungles

  Temple of Venus and Roma
by jungles

This is actually two temples set back to back, one dedicated to the goddess Venus (goddess of love) and the other to the goddess Roma (Eternal Rome). The statue of Roma looked out over the Roman Forum, while that of Venus looked towards the Colosseum. Together they made up the largest temple in ancient Rome. Another layer of symbolism is that since Venus is the goddes of love (amor in Latin), and Amor spelled backwards is Roma, this is another way in which the two temples mirrored each other. It is said that the small rooms visible in the foundations of the temple of Venus were used by the prostitutes working the Colosseum, who brought their clients down to the nearby Temple of Love.

The temple was designed by the Emperor Hadrian but criticised by his brilliant lead architect Apollodorus, who was banished and executed shortly afterwards. Not too much of it is left apart from the foundations and some columns along the side, which are visible on your right as you walk up the Via Sacra to enter the Forum.

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  • Written Jun 1, 2006
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