"Column of Marcus Aurelius" Colonna Marco Aurelio - Column of Marcus Aurelius Tip by jungles

  Column of Marcus Aurelius
by jungles

This column looks remarkably similar to the column of Trajan. In fact it was modelled on Trajan's column but was built for a later emperor, Marcus Aurelius (the same emperor whose bronze statue stands in the centre of the Campidoglio). The reliefs that adorn the column tell the story of Marcus Aurelius' troops crossing the Danube to conquer the Germanic tribes on the other side. The carving is not as fine as that of Trajan's Column, though the figures stand out more as they are carved in higher relief.

The small slits that run up the side of the column are windows used to light a spiral staircase inside the column which winds up to the platform on top. Where statues of both Marcus Aurelius and his wife Faustina stood in ancient times, St. Paul now looks down on the plaza from the top of the statue. He was placed there by the Pope in 1589 at the same time that St. Peter, the other patron saint of Rome, was placed on Trajan's column. Also at that time, the column was restored and adapted to the current ground level, thus about 3 metres of the base are now below ground. The inscription seen at what is now the base was also added, which mistakenly calls it the column of Antoninus Pius (a column for this emperor did exist but is now lost).

You will likely see several guards and policemen nearby; the office of the Prime Minister is in the Palazzo Chigi in the northeast corner of the plaza.

Address: Piazza Colonna
Directions: The column is clearly visible from Via del Corso, nearly opposite Via dei Sabini.

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Was this review helpful?

  • Written Jun 9, 2006
  • Send to a Friend
  • Add to your Trip Planner
  • Report Abuse


jungles Used To Live Here!


“Travel is not an escape from life, it's a way of life.”

Online Now


Top 1,000 Travel Writer
Member Rank:
0 0 7 0 8

Have you been to Rome?

  Share Your Travels