Friday, May 09, 2008

Italy - Rome and The Vatican

When I was in Italy in 1999 before year 2000.
Many of their historical buildings were under going some repairs and renovation works.
I was always interested in the history of Rome... anicent Rome!
Their medival times soliders and armors!
It's a pity I didn't take much pictures on the ancient ruins.
Especially the Roman Forum, I just managed to caught a glimpse of it as the tour bus passed!

Rome, named as Capital of the World or Eternal City
It is Italy's capital and largest city.
As the legend says, Rome was founded in 753 B.C.
A republic was declared in Rome in 509 B.B.

The COLOSSEUM (Colosseo)Built in A.D. 72 by Vespasian and later in A.D. 80 by his son, Titus.
Once the Colosseum was able to seat 50,000 people.
A place where men combats with men or with the animals.
Its area is 188 x 156 meters and 57 meters tall.

I did not enter the Colosseum.
There were lots of people there.
Street vendors, Food carts, people dressing up as Roman soliders for photography...etc.
The place was rather lively.

A Triumph Arches.
It was erected in honor of Constantine's for defeat of the pagan Maxentius (A.D. 306).
It is 21 metres tall with 25 meters long triple arches.

Located just east of Vatican City. Built in 130 A.D. as a tomb for Hadrian Emperor.
Was used as a fortress in the middle ages
Now an Art Museum, display the history of Rome, their ancient weapons and armors.

VATICAN CITYVatican is an independent state from 8th century.
It is the world's smallest independent state of approx. half a square kilometer of territory.

ST. PETER'S (San Pietro)Greatest Church build it 324 as a shrine for the mortal remains of St. Peter.
The Circus of Nero is where St. Peter was crucified.
This building took hundreds of years to complete.

Standing in the the middle of St. Peter's Square (Piazza San Pietro).
The doric-pillared colonnade reaches out surrounding the square was built in 1937.
It is 240 meter wide open. Composed of 284 pillars with 140 statues and martyrs.
The St. Peter's Square is able to hold 300,000 people!!!

The exteriors was going through extensive repairs to prepare for the 2000 year!
Luckily, the inside were still open to visitors.
I took many photos inside but many came out of focus and dark.
That's the cons of using film camera.
I should have brought along a camera stand.
It's a pity because the interior of the church and it's statues were all so grand and well maintain!
I especially like the ceilling works! Mostly it's all beautifully painted.

SPANISH STEPSDesigned & built in 1723 by Francesco de Sanctis.
Located in Piazza Di Spagna.
The steps got it's name from a Spanish Embassy that was built nearby in the 19th century.

See how it the steps were flooded by people there, no wonder it's one of the city's favourite spots!
When I was there, I was quite surprised to see Horse carriages there for hire.
The carriages were all very nicely decorated.
I think it romantic to sit in the horse carriage to go round these places near sunset...
There were many cafe opposite the Spanish Steps.
Even though there were lots of people sitting and eating on the steps, the entire place was very clean. No litter bugs!

TREVI FOUNTAINThis enormous fountain occupies most of Piazza di Trevi, a charming place off Via Del Corso.
Built in 19 B.C. by Agrippa but was abandon.
In the 1400s, Pope Nicholas V requested to design it to have its waters be collected.
Decorative elements were added in the 18th century by Niccolo Salvi.
This fountain has drawn many tourists there to Make A Wish.
Not sure why but it seems like a custom to stand with your back facing the fountain, make a wish and then throw the coin backwards!!!

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