Fascist Rome

 
Roma Ostiense station then, decorated for Hitler, and today. To commemorate his forthcoming visit to Rome in 1938, the current Ostiense station was built, replacing an existing rural railway station, with the aim of creating a monumental station to receive the German dictator. A new road was also built to connect the station with Porta San Paolo - this was initially named Via A. Hitler but, after the war, it became Viale delle Cave Ardeatine to commemorate victims of the Nazi occupation. 

Hitler being greeted upon arrival. Shortly after 8:00 on the morning of May 3, 1938, the Duke of Pistoia, a cousin of the King, welcomed Hitler to Italy on the Italian side of the Brenner Pass. That evening at 8:30, the special train pulled into the Ostiense station in Rome. King Victor Emmanuel III, Mussolini, and Ciano were present to greet Hitler. Hitler was wearing his brown uniform and his peaked cap, knee boots and knee breeches. The King, Mussolini and Ciano were clad in uniforms as well. Hitler's visit to Rome is cinematically recreated in director Ettore Scola's film Una giornata particolare, who also used archived newsreel footage showing the actual meeting between Hitler, Benito Mussolini, and Victor Emanuel III. Italian architect Roberto Narducci designed the station in the architectural style favoured by Hitler- the design of the station's marble façade was almost identical to that of the Italian pavilion at the 1942 Rome World's Fair (a design never fully realised due to the Second World War). The station building was inaugurated on October 28, 1940.  The entire façade is made of Travertine marble and the entrance is marked by a columned portico. On the right side of the façade is a relief by Francesco Nagni representing the mythical figures of Bellerophon and Pegasus.  
The fascist eagle adorning the portico for the occasion remains as do the mosaics.
  
 The mosaics serve to reinforce the greatness of Rome, even if by lying about having had Ireland and Scotland as part of its empire.
 
The mosaics are even found in the shop within the station
 
The road leading from the station was named Viale Adolf Hitler, now renamed Viale dei Partigiani

After the arrival reception, the King and Hitler rode to the Quirinal Palace in the royal carriage. The Quirinal Palace is an historic building, one of the three current official residences of the President of the Italian Republic, together with Villa Rosebery in Naples and tenuta di Castelporziano. It is located on the Quirinal Hill, the highest of the seven hills of Rome. It has housed thirty Popes, four Kings of Italy and twelve presidents of the Italian Republic. The palace extends for an area of 110,500 square metres and is the ninth largest palace in the world in terms of area. Mussolini had to remain behind since he was not a head of state as Hitler was. The next day, Hitler received Mussolini at the Quirinal Palace at 10:00 a.m. Here they are seen being driven away together through the portal. 
Thirty minutes later, they placed wreaths on the tomb of the Unknown Soldier and at the Pantheon, and thereafter inspected four thousand militiamen. Above the swastika armband on his left sleeve, Hitler wore the insignia of an Honorary Corporal in the Fascist Militia. It consisted of a triangle of cloth with a fascio in its centre. The honorary dagger of the Fascist Militia adorned his leather belt. In spite of the known fact that Hitler despised militia units, he was most patient that day, submitting to the ordeal without complaint for the sake of his friendship with Mussolini.One can see how the Pantheon influenced the plans for Hitler's vast Volkshalle, the centrepiece of the new Nazi capital of Germania.
 
The Pantheon showing the two bell towers by Bernini and after their removal in 1883.
Palazzo Littorio, the headquarters of the Fascist Party, now the Palazzo del Catasto. 
At 11:00 a.m., Hitler and Mussolini laid a wreath at the monument to the dead of the Fascist Movement. This monument was located in a small memorial chapel in the Palazzo Littorio, the headquarters of the Fascist Party, now the Palazzo del Catasto. The fascist iconography on the façade remains. Here Hitler was honoured by the Italian Fascists with a gift, a vase dating from the fourth century BCE with the swastika insignia.
      
With the Palazzo Venezia behind me, and the infamous balcony from where Mussolini declared unprovoked war against Britain, declaring
We are going to war against the plutocratic and reactionary democracies of the West, who have hindered the advance, and often threatened even the existence of the Italian people.  The die is cast and we have, of our free will, well burned the bridges behind us.
On the right is Hitler and Mussolini in 1938 and today. At noon when Hitler visited the Palazzo Venezia, he presented Mussolini with the following certificate of honour:
As Führer and Chancellor of the German Reich, I ask Benito Mussolini, the Duce of this Volk, to which the world owes the great inventor and scholar Galileo Galilei, to accept this Zeiss telescope, complete with the entire equipment for an observatory, as a present and as a symbol of reverence and friendship.
Today it may be hard to imagine Palazzo Vienna was the most sacred of all the places that fascism sought to turn into symbols of its power. Mussolini delivered all his most important speeches, including the declaration of the Italian empire in May 1936, from its balcony (pictured above). During the regime, large fascist symbols adorned either side of it. Today, the prime minister's office is located off the Via del Corso in Palazzo Chigi, and Palazzo Venezia is a museum containing art works, pottery and tapestries from the medieval period. The Sala del Mappamondo, where the dictator had his office, can be visited only during special exhibitions. 
At 4:30 p.m., the two dictators attended performances by 50,000 Fascist youths in Centocelle (Campo Roma). These exercises were exclusively of a military and paramilitary nature, conducted by the Young Fascists and the Avantguardisti, all of whom were only between fourteen and eighteen years old.
At 6:00 p.m., Hitler addressed 6,500 Germans living abroad who had congregated in the Basilica of Maxentius:
I usually do not have the opportunity to convey my thanks to the German Reich citizens abroad for their avowal of faith and I am happy to be able to do so at this hour. Many of you have been so fortunate as to return to the Reich from time to time, to see it with your own eyes and to witness the progress made by it. Many of you, however, are not this lucky. They can but look to the Reich from afar, read about it or see it in pictures. However, its spell shall never desert them nor shall the power of the National Socialist Weltanschauung ever set them free. To the contrary, the further away they are from their homeland, the more fervent their dedication to it and the more resounding their avowal of that Weltanschauung which has converted their homeland, once so despised, oppressed, and trod upon, into a Reich of honour and dignity—because of character again!
You who have been so fortunate as to live in this country, you shall find many traits familiar to you so that it is easier for you than for any other group of Germans abroad to comprehend the essence and import of today’s Reich. You yourselves live in a state that glorifies those virtues and ideals so dear to us. I have come here to say this to you in few words and to remind you to form a Volksgemeinschaft on a small scale here away from home such as the entire German nation forms at home—a Volksgemeinschaft of mutual aid and support. Rest assured that no matter where a German brings sacrifices to his Volksgenossen, these sacrifices shall be weighed and valued in the same manner and these shall be regarded as sacrifices to the entire Volksgemeinschaft.
On the walls of the basilica are these marble and bronze maps Mussolini had installed showing the expansion of Rome from around 760 BCE to 1935 and beyond. The first map represents the birth of Rome in 753 BCE.  The second shows Rome in 146 BCE following the Punic Wars with Carthage. The third map shows Rome during the time of Augustus in 14 CE followed by the fourth map showing the empire at its height under Trajan by 117 CE.  In 1935, Mussolini added the fifth map shown here showing his expansionist aims which included Libya, Ethiopia and future conquests of Turkey and the Middle East.  This tactfully was removed by the end of the war and is apparently being stored in a basement in EUR.
 
By 10:30 p.m., Hitler’s special train left Termini station for Naples.
When Hitler returned to Rome from Naples on May 6 by train at 10:00 a.m., a great military review took place along the Via dei Trionfi. Here the Italian troops displayed to Hitler their newly acquired “Passo Romano,” the Italian version of the German goose step. Via dei Trionfi, now Via dei Fori Imperiali (ironic given that the new road actually destroyed the Imperial Forums it was named for), was inaugurated  in 1933  The widened street supervised by Antonio Munoz opened in October 1933 and ran between the Palatine and Celian hills. Via dei Trionfi joined Via dell' Impero at the Colosseum. The two streets opened up access to the seven hills of Rome.
Rome was the showpiece of a multifaceted program of ideological archaeology that involved the clearing, isolation, and restoration of certain key monuments such as the Mausoleum of Augustus and the Ara Pacis. It also included projects that coordinated archaeology with new construction, such as the creation of the parade route of the via dell’Impero (now the via dei Fori Imperiali) through the fora of the Caesars. The government financed exhibitions and the creation of museums that highlighted the new discoveries and strengthened the connection between romanità and fascist policy. Finally, the ambitious fascist construction and urban renewal program led to chance archaeological discoveries, such as the republican temples of the Largo Argentina in central Rome, that the regime was flexible enough to preserve and fit into its propaganda program. 
Dyson (177)
 
Although the road was touted as a celebration of the glories of ancient Rome, as shown above, its construction entailed the systematic demolition of over 40,000 square yards of one of the most densely populated areas of Rome, obliterating ancient, mediæval and Renaissance structures, including five churches and popular tenements that housed 746 of Rome's poorest families. The via dei Fori Imperiali hid over 84% of the recently excavated forums of Nerva and Trajan;  of the areas excavated, a great deal of data has been lost. Records at the Musei Capitolini noted that many of the objects found were stored in crates in the vaults of Museo della Civiltà Romana, but little associated data was recorded about the exact location and context of the objects, meaning that huge amounts of information that could be inferred is now irrecoverable whilst completely changing the landscape and character of the heart of Rome and slicing the Fora area in two. General outrage is often the reaction of modern archaeologists and scholars when discussing it.  Perhaps the biggest issue of all was that the now four-lane, heavily trafficked road carried an extremely heavy load of motor vehicle traffic straight through the Roman Forum area, whose exhaust fumes and vibrations continue to do immeasurable damage to the surrounding ancient Roman monuments. After numerous failed efforts by academics and citizen’s groups to convince the Roman city government to attempt to undo what Mussolini government created by removing the road, the Mayor of Roma Ignazio Marino closed the southern part of the road on August 3, 2013.

Mussolini and Hitler admiring the Paolina Borghese. In the evening of May 6 they attended performances of the Dopolavoro organisation in the park of the Villa Borghese and a concert given on the Piazza di Siena.
The situation for the Italian Jews became really dangerous when the fascist government collapsed in 1943, and the Germans occupied Rome. The tragedy of the new situation is captured well in the history of the young Italian Jewish epigrapher Mario Segre. Segre had established a promising reputation for himself as a scholar in spite of the anti-Semitic restrictions and was hoping to escape to an academic post in America. But in order to increase the number of his publications he needed the resources of the library of the German Archaeological Institute. The library was barred to Jews, but von Gerkan appears to have been flexible in his enforcement of the policy. Others, more sympathetic to the Nazi racial policy, were not so decent. One scholar, probably the hard-line Italian fascist Giulio Jacopi, threatened to denounce von Gerkan to the German authorities if Segre continued to be admitted to the library. In that threat he was supported by the Institute’s second secretary, Siegfried Fuchs, who was also an SS official. Segre was barred. His inability to advance his scholarly research and publication ruined his chance to find an American position. He took refuge in the Swedish Institute, a  protected neutral oasis. In a rare foray outside of those protected walls to enjoy the Villa Borghese gardens, he was seized, and he and his family perished in the concentration camps.
Dyson (211-212) In Pursuit of Ancient Pasts
At Palazzo Braschi, former headquarters of the Fascist Party in Rome facing the Corso Vittorio Emanuele II and in 1934. Decorated with the giant face of Benito Mussolini, the word "Si" is in reference to the Italian general election which took place on March 26, 1934 in the form of a referendum; voters could either approve or reject the Grand Council of the National Fascist Party, 99.84% of voters voted 'si.' The overwhelming majority provoked Mussolini to dub the election the "second referendum of Fascism" which reinforced his hold on power and status as Il Duce.  After the war, the building housed 300 refugee families and many of the interior frescoes were seriously damaged by the fires they lit to keep warm. In 1949 the palace passed to the civic authorities and, following extensive conservation in 1952, the present installation of the museum was effected and it now houses the Museo di Roma, the "museum of Rome", covering the history of the city in the period from the Middle Ages through the nineteenth century.
Mussolini's fascists marching into Rome before the Victor Emmanuel Monument II in 1922 and the same scene June 1944 with British and American forces after finally ridding the earth of Italian fascism. The Vittoriano fronts the Piazza di Venezia at the end of the Corso, the Via Flaminia, down which in ancient times the legions marched in triumph after their victories. 
Standing in front of the Obelisk of Axum, a 1,700-year-old, 79-foot granite stele/obelisk, weighing 160 tonnes, looted from the city of Axum in Ethiopia. It is ornamented with two false doors at the base and features decorations resembling windows on all sides. The obelisk ends in a semi-circular top part, which used to be enclosed by metal frames.The Obelisk of Axum was itself collapsed and broken when it was found by Italian soldiers at the end of 1935, following the Italian conquest of Ethiopia. It had fallen in the 4th century and had broken into five pieces. In 1937, it was taken as war booty and moved to Italy by the Fascist regime, which wanted to commemorate the conquest of Ethiopia and the birth of the ephemeral "new Roman Empire" (see Italian Empire). The stele which were transported by truck along the tortuous route between Axum and the port of Massawa, taking five trips over a period of two months. It arrived via ship in Naples (on a boat called the Adua), on March 27, 1937. It was then transported to Rome, where it was reassembled and erected on Porta Capena square in front of the Ministry for Italian Africa (later the headquarters of the United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organization) and the Circus Maximus. It was officially unveiled on October 28 1937 to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the March on Rome. The operation was coordinated by Ugo Monneret de Villard.
Incredibly, the nearly 18 metre-high Mussolini Obelisk remains, honouring the dictator at the Foro Italico, originally known as the Foro Mussolini. The 120ft-high white marble obelisk was built in 1932 on the orders of Mussolini, with the Latin words “Mussolini Dux” inscribed down its side – Dux being Latin for Duce or leader. In the base of the 300-tonne obelisk was hidden a metal box containing a few gold coins and a parchment text, written in Latin, called the Codex Fori Mussolini – the Mussolini Forums Codex. While the existence of the document has long been known, it has been impossible to access without damaging the monument.   But two scholars have managed to piece together what they believe to be an accurate version of the document by consulting Fascist archives in Rome.  Han Lamers, from Humboldt University in Berlin, and Bettina Reitz-Joosse, from Groningen University in the Netherlands, have now published a book on the codex, The Codex Fori Mussolini - A Latin Text of Italian Fascism, in which they revealed that it chronicles the birth of Italian Fascism and Mussolini’s rise to power.  The 1,200 word paean depicts Italy as a country hurtling towards disaster in the wake of World War One, before being saved by Mussolini "through his superhuman insight and resoluteness", Dr Lamers said according to the BBC.  "The text presents Mussolini as a kind of new Roman emperor, but also, by using biblical language, as the saviour of the Italian people."  The text is accompanied by a medal depicting Mussolini wearing a lion skin on his head.   Though written in the language of the Roman Empire, the document was aimed at audiences far in the future – the Fascists envisaged it being discovered centuries later by archaeologists, long after Mussolini’s rule had ended.    They were inspired by the archaeological discoveries that they themselves were making at the time in former Roman territories.  Mussolini himself was keen to portray himself as a 20th century Augustus.  The text was written by an Italian classics scholar, Aurelio Giuseppe Amatucci. Although a fulsome eulogy to the glories of Fascism, it was designed to be discovered only after Fascism had ceased to exist.  “Though written in the language of Roman antiquity, the Codex was supposed to reach audiences in the distant future,” the publishers, Bloomsbury, explained. “Placed under the obelisk with future excavation and rediscovery in mind, the Latin text was an attempt at directing the future reception of Italian Fascism.  “As the first detailed study of a Fascist Latin text, (the book) also throws new light on the important role of the Latin language in Italian Fascist culture.”
The Stadio dei Marmia and The Accademia Fascista on the Foro Mussolini then and now. The athletic complex was dedicated to Mussolini personally and began in 1928, finishing in 1932. This includes the Stadio Mussolini, designed by architect Enrico Della Debbio.   

The fascist statues remain in situ including this fascist soldier still on the march 
Naples and Venice
 
'The Skier' and Gorizia
Rome and Viterbo 
 
The swimming pool remains unchanged, down to the paintwork on the walls
 
The construction of Via dell’Impero, Rome 1924-1932. Connecting Mussolini’s office at Piazza Venezia to the Coliseum, the construction Via dell’Impero (now Via dei Fori Imperiali) required the demolition of many ancient ruins standing at the Forum Romanum. The centre showing Mussolini parading down the Via dei Fori Imperiali; a fascist-era marker remains commemorating the opening of Via del Impero. 
Mussolini riding on horseback with his troops past the Colosseum after the opening of the Via dell’Impero. Mussolini had wide roads created to circle the city's ancient monuments. The opening was part of the celebrations that marked the tenth anniversary of Fascist rule in Italy.
Mussolini decided to construct a parade route between his residence in the Palazzo Venezia and the Colosseum. It would pass by the ruins of the fora erected by Julius Caesar, Augustus, and Trajan, monuments that had been buried under centuries of debris and obscured by later building additions. These ancient structures were rapidly cleared down to their imperial levels and restored in such a way as to provide an appropriate backdrop to fascist martial displays. In the process more than five thousand housing units were destroyed, and 214,000 cubic feet of earth were removed. The excavations were conducted in great haste, few records were kept, and in most cases no publications of the finds ever appeared. Some of the remains were reburied as the parade way and surrounding parks—complete with statues of “good” emperors—were built over them. The example of the imperial fora would return as a major source of controversy in the postwar years. 
Dyson (178-9)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               Standing in front of the bronze statue of Gaius Julius Caesar, installed during the fascist period in the 1930s on Via dei Fori Imperiali just in front of ruins of Foro di Cesare, and as it appeared to American GIs during the war. Mussolini decided to construct a parade route between his residence in the Palazzo Venezia and the Colosseum. It would pass by the ruins of the fora erected by Julius Caesar, Augustus, and Trajan, monuments that had been buried under centuries of debris and obscured by later building additions. These ancient structures were rapidly cleared down to their imperial levels and restored in such a way as to provide an appropriate backdrop to fascist martial displays. In the process more than five thousand housing units were destroyed, and 214,000 cubic feet of earth were removed. The excavations were conducted in great haste, few records were kept, and in most cases no publications of the finds ever appeared. Some of the remains were reburied as the parade way and surrounding parks—complete with statues of “good” emperors—were built over them. The example of the imperial fora would return as a major source of controversy in the postwar years.
 
Mussolini before the bronze statue of Nerva with me and Drake Winston in front of those of Augustus and Trajan 
 
In front of the Arch of Constantine beside the Colosseum and from a 19th century photograph by Giacomo Brogi

 Inside the Colosseum in 1890 and today
 
During the war and today 

At the Forum Romanum looking towards the Capitoline
 
 With the Temple of Castor and Pollux on the right and the Temple of Cæsar in the centre



 The Arch of Titus
 
Visiting again with my parents and little Drake Winston in front of a copy in Munich

The image used on the Israeli coat of arms is based on the depiction of the menorah on the Arch of Titus. 

The Circus Maximus and the site today. By 1934 the fascists had managed to clear the  Circus Maximus and completed work on the Via del Circo Massimo. The Circus Maximus, previously surrounded by slums and a Jewish cemetery, was cleared by September-October. The new Via del Circo Massimo created a panoramic view of Circus Maximus and Palatine hill. Mussolini opened the road on October 28 with a parade of 15,000 athletes shown on the right and provided a site for four major exhibitions in the late 1930s.
The Theatre of Marcellus, the largest and most important theatre in Ancient Rome which could originally hold between 11,000 and 20,000 spectators. Beside it are the remains of the Temple of Apollo and the porticus Octaviae behind.
An American column snaking Piazza del Popolo before pressing north in pursuit of the retreating German armies, and the wife at the same spot. The piazza lies inside the northern gate in the Aurelian Walls, once the Porta Flaminia of ancient Rome, and now called the Porta del Popolo. For centuries, the Piazza del Popolo was a place for public executions, the last of which took place in 1826. The wife is standing at the base of the obelisk of Sety I (later erected by Rameses II) from Heliopolis. Three sides of the obelisk were carved during the reign of Sety I and the fourth side, under Rameses II. The obelisk, known as the Flaminio Obelisk or the Popolo Obelisk, is the second oldest and, at  24 metres high (36 m. including its plinth) one of the tallest obelisks in Rome. It had been brought to Rome in 10 BCE by order of Augustus and originally set up in the Circus Maximus. It was re-erected at the piazza by Domenico Fontana in 1589 as part of the urban plan of Sixtus V.
Another arch in the Forum Romanum is the white marble Arch of Septimius Severus, dedicated in 203 to commemorate the Parthian victories of Emperor Septimius Severus and his two sons, Caracalla and Geta, in the two campaigns against the Parthians of 194/195 and 197-199.  After the death of Septimius Severus, his sons Caracalla and Geta were initially joint emperors. Caracalla had Geta assassinated in 212; Geta's memorials were destroyed and all images or mentions of him were removed from public buildings and monuments. Accordingly Geta's image and inscriptions referring to him were removed from the arch.

The Arch of Gallienus is a name given to the Porta Esquilina, an ancient Roman arch in the Servian Wall of Rome. It was here that the ancient Roman roads via Labicana and via Tiburtina started. The arch was rebuilt in monumental style in the Augustan period. In 262, the equestrian (Marcus) Aurelius Victor rededicated the arch to the emperor Gallienus and his wife Cornelia Salonina. It is inscribed:




The Temple of Hercules Victor ('Hercules the Winner') or Hercules Olivarius is an ancient edifice located in Piazza Bocca della Verità, in the area of the Forum Boarium close to the Tiber. It is a monopteros- a round temple of Greek 'peripteral' design completely encircled by a colonnade. This layout caused it to be mistaken for a temple of Vesta until it was correctly identified by Napoleon's Prefect of Rome, Camille de Tournon.  Dating from the later 2nd century BC, and perhaps erected by L. Mummius Achaicus, conqueror of the Achaeans and destroyer of Corinth, the temple is 14.8 metres in diameter and consists of a circular cella within a concentric ring of twenty Corinthian columns 10.66 metres tall, resting on a tuff foundation. These elements supported an architrave and roof, which have disappeared.  The temple is the earliest surviving marble building in Rome.  Its major literary sources are two almost identical passages, one in Servius' commentary on the Aeneid (viii.363) and the other in Macrobius Saturnalia. Despite (or perhaps due to) the Forum Boarium's role as the cattle-market for ancient Rome, the Temple of Hercules is the subject of a folk belief claiming that neither flies nor dogs will enter the holy place. The temple was recognised officially as an ancient monument in 1935 and restored at last in 1996.  


   
The Arcus Argentariorum (Latin, "Arch of the money-changers". It is a widespread misconception that it is a triumphal arch, but it is in fact entirely different in form, with no curves and more resembling an architrave. Its actual purpose is unknown, but the most probable scenario is that it formed a monumental gate where the vicus Jugarius entered the Forum Boarium. As the dedicatory inscription says, it was commissioned not by the state or emperor, but by the local money-changers (argentarii) and merchants (negotiantes), in honour of Septimius Severus and his family. The top was possibly once decorated with statues of the imperial family, now long gone.  It was finished in 204 CE and its dedicatory inscription is framed by two bas-reliefs representing Hercules and a genius. The figures of Caracalla's brother, father in law and wife on the passage panels and on the banners on the outside, and their names on the dedicatory inscription, were chiselled out after Caracalla seized sole power and assassinated them.  These sacrificial scenes gave rise to the popular but incorrect saying about the arch that 
Tra la vacca e il toro, troverai un gran tesoro 
(Between the cow and the bull - i.e., within the arch - you'll find a great treasure). 
This led past treasure-hunters to drill many holes in it, which are still visible.  Above the main reliefs, are smaller panels with Victories or eagles holding up victors' wreaths, and beneath them more sacrificial scenes. The external decoration of the pillars includes soldiers, barbarian prisoners, military banners (with busts of the imperial family) and a now damaged figure in a short tunic.

Mussolini striding past the Ara Pacis, an “altar of peace” commissioned by the Roman Senate in 13 BCE to honour Augustus. The Ara Pacis Augustae had disappeared beneath the Palazzo Peretti and was known only by fragments found and scattered in many museums. The reconstruction of the Ara Pacis began in the sixteenth century and only ended that, four centuries later, with the reconstruction of the monument in 1938. It took the intervention of Mussolini, who wanted to pose as a new Augustus, for in 1937 the team of Giuseppe Moretti finally performs a full search under the Palazzo Peretti: in February 1937, the Cabinet decreed that, as the two thousandth anniversary of the birth of Augustus and the Augustan year (September 1937 - September 1938), the resumption of excavations, not to jeopardize the stability of the Palazzo Peretti, we began implementing pioneering techniques with a freezing the soil (technological innovation of freezing 600 m3 of soil with liquid carbon dioxide injection through 55 pipes), which made possible the excavations.

Hitler and Mussolini appreciating the supposed representation of Pax, the goddess of peace, on the east side of the altar under the direction of Ranuccio Bianchi Bandinelli. The reconstruction of the Ara Pacis being impossible in situ without the demolition of the Palazzo Peretti, Mussolini then decided to rebuild the monument, but next to the Mausoleum of Augustus, along the Tiber. Thus would be created a memorial to the emperor Augustus. Between June and September 1938, simultaneously with the excavation, so began the work of the pavilion, cement and glass, designed to accommodate and protect the Ara Pacis, but by changing its direction by 90 °. On the side of the base of the pavilion, Mussolini had engraved the Latin text of Res Gestae Augustus. The pavilion was built in less than an hundred days. On September 23, closing day of the Augustan year, Mussolini inaugurated the monument, a symbol of Imperial Rome, to show that the Roman civilisation remains alive and that the myth of Rome survives in modern Italy, where the fascist regime carries in its height the celebration of unity and Romanism.

Mussolini had stated that “I monumenti millenari della nostra storia devono giganteggiare nella necessaria solitudine [The thousands-of- years-old monuments of our history must grow more magnificent in their required isolation"] Important Roman structures were thus cleaned of later “accretions” as part of the notorious sventramento that is now criticised by urban historians for its destruction of the later historical context of the Roman monuments. The most ambitious of these projects was the clearing of the Mausoleum of Augustus near the Tiber. All post- Roman remains were removed from the tomb itself, and the postclassical buildings that surrounded it were levelled to create a new piazza framed by buildings replete with fascist visual and verbal propaganda. The importance of the tomb was enhanced by the reconstruction of the Augustan Ara Pacis at a new location between the mausoleum and the Tiber. Mussolini closely identified with Augustus, and the dedication of the complex in 1938 became one of the great propaganda events in the history of his regime. 
Dyson (177-178) In Pursuit of Ancient Pasts
In 1902, the German scholar Eugen Petersen proposed a reconstruction of the partially excavated monument after studying photos of fragments from a number of European museums. In 1937–1938, Mussolini had the rest of the Ara Pacis excavated; then he had the monument reconstructed following Petersen’s model—all to celebrate the Romanitá of the Fascist regime. In 1938, Mussolini had a protective building for the Altar built, as it had been reconstructed by Vittorio Ballio Morpurgo, near the Mausoleum of Augustus (moving the Altar in the process) as part of his attempt to create an ancient Roman "theme park" to glorify Fascist Italy. During the war, the Ara Pacis was protected by sandbags. Then successive restorations postwar allowed to reconstruct almost in its entirety. Today, a new museum, designed by architect Richard Meier, is the setting for the Ara Pacis.
Nearby is the Mausoleum of Augustus, a large tomb built by Augustus in 28 BCE on the the Piazza Augusto Imperatore, near the corner with Via di Ripetta as it runs along the Tiber. The interior of the mausoleum is no longer open to tourists, as looting, time, and neglect have stripped the ruins of marbled elegance. Even as ruins, it is a dominating landmark on the northern side of the Campus Martius. It was one of the first projects initiated by Augustus in the city of Rome following his victory at the Battle of Actium in 31 BCE. The mausoleum was circular in plan, consisting of several concentric rings of earth and brick, planted with cypresses on top of the building and capped (possibly, as reconstructions are unsure at best) by a conical roof and a statue of Augustus. The traditional story is that in 410, during the sack of Rome by Alaric, the pillaging Visigoths rifled the vaults, stole the urns and scattered the ashes, without damaging the structure of the building (Lanciani). Curtius claims however that "[t]he story of its plundering by Alaric in 410 has no historical foundation, and we know nothing of its destruction". In the Middle Ages the artificial tumulus was fortified as a castle— as was the mausoleum of Hadrian, which was turned into the Castel Sant'Angelo— and occupied by the Colonna family. It was not until the 1930s that the site was opened as a preserved archaeological landmark along with the newly moved and reconstructed Ara Pacis nearby. The restoration of the Mausoleum of Augustus to a place of prominence featured in Benito Mussolini's ambitious reordering of the city of Rome which strove to connect the aspirations of Italian Fascism with the former glories of the Roman Empire. Mussolini viewed himself especially connected to the achievements of Augustus, seeing himself as a 'reborn Augustus' ready to usher in a new age of Italian dominance.
All post- Roman remains were removed from the tomb itself, and the postclassical buildings that surrounded it were levelled to create a new piazza framed by buildings replete with fascist visual and verbal propaganda. The importance of the tomb was enhanced by the reconstruction of the Augustan Ara Pacis at a new location between the mausoleum and the Tiber. Mussolini closely identified with Augustus, and the dedication of the complex in 1938 became one of the great propaganda events in the history of his regime.
 Dyson (178)
The Porticus of Octavia built by Augustus in the name of his sister, Octavia Minor, sometime after 27 BCE in place of the Porticus Metelli. The colonnaded walks of the portico enclosed the temples of Jupiter Stator and Juno Regina, next to the Theatre of Marcellus. It burned down in 80 CE and was restored, probably by Domitian, and again after a second fire in 203 CE by Septimius Severus and Caracalla. It was adorned with foreign marble and contained many famous works of art mentioned in Pliny's ''Natural History''. The structure was damaged by an earthquake in 442 CE, when two of the destroyed columns were replaced with an archway which still stands. 
The Arch of Drusus, close to the First Mile of the Appian Way and next to the Porta San Sebastiano. It is now generally agreed that it has nothing to do with Nero Claudius Drusus, the conqueror of the Germans. Some versions have the arch being constructed as part of a spur added to the Aqua Marcia by Caracalla in 211-216 AD to take water from that aqueduct to Caracalla’s new baths. However, it appears more likely that the arch pre-dated the aqueduct and that the aqueduct was conveniently routed over the top of the arch.  Only the central part of this arch is now standing, but it was originally triple, or at least with projections on each side, although never finished. It is built of travertine, faced with marble, and on each side of the archway are columns of Numidian marble with white marble bases. The archway is 7.21 metres high. The aqua Antoniniana, the branch of the Aqua Marcia, ran over this arch, but the brick-faced concrete that is visible on the top seems to belong to a later period. The arch may possibly be the arch of Trajan.
The so-called Arch of Janus, the only quadrifrons triumphal arch preserved in Rome, across a crossroads in the Velabrum-Forum Boarium. It was built in the early 4th century, using spolia, possibly in honour of Constantine I or Constantius II. Its current name probably dates from the Renaissance or later, and was not used to describe it in classical antiquity. The name is derived from the structure's four-fronted, four-arched configuration; relating this to the four-faced version of Janus (Ianus Quadrifons), as well as to actual Janus-related structures mentioned in historic descriptions of ancient Rome.
The mausoleum of Hadrian, built on the right bank of the Tiber, between 134 and 139 CE. Originally the mausoleum was a decorated cylinder, with a garden top and golden quadriga. Hadrian's ashes were placed here a year after his death in Baiae in 138, together with those of his wife Sabina, and his first adopted son, Lucius Aelius, who also died in 138. Following this, the remains of succeeding emperors were also placed here, the last recorded deposition being Caracalla in 217. The urns containing these ashes were probably placed in what is now known as the Treasury room deep within the building. The popes converted the structure into a castle- Castel Sant'Angelo- beginning in the 14th century; Pope Nicholas III connected the castle to St Peter's Basilica by a covered fortified corridor called the Passetto di Borgo. The fortress was the refuge of Pope Clement VII from the siege of Charles V's Landsknechte during the Sack of Rome (1527), in which Benvenuto Cellini describes strolling the ramparts and shooting enemy soldiers.
The wife and I on the Ponte Sant'Angelo, formerly the Pons Aelius, completed in 134 CE by Hadrian to span the Tiber, from the city centre to his newly constructed mausoleum. The bridge is faced with travertine marble and spans the Tiber with five arches, three of which are Roman.


Trevi Fountain, immortalised by Anita Ekberg in La Dolce Vita, is Rome’s most famous fountain. The baroque bonanza was designed by Nicola Salvi in 1732 and depicts Neptune’s chariot being led by Tritons with sea horses – one wild, one docile – representing the various moods of the sea. The water comes from one of the city’s earliest aqueducts and the name ‘Trevi’ refers to the ‘tre vie’ (three roads) that converge at the fountain.
The Cordonata during the fascist era and today, designed by Michelangelo to gradually ascend the Capitoline Hill to reach the high piazza, so that the Campidoglio resolutely turned its back on the Roman Forum that it had once commanded. It was built to be wide enough for horse riders to ascend the hill without dismounting. The railings are topped by the statues of two Egyptian lions in black basalt at their base and the marble renditions of Castor and Pollux at their top shown here.
It was here 
on 7 April 1926 an upper-class 10 from a hall at the Campidoglio in the centre of historic Rome, where, ironically, he had just inaugurated an international surgeons' conference. Her bullet merely nicked the bridge of her target's nose and Mussolini took the opportunity to spin the affair in his favour by being photographed shortly afterwards continuing his work and with just a small facial plaster to hint at his brush with death. Indeed, by 4.30 p.m., still sporting his bandage, Mussolini was orating to a meeting of party officials and government workers. In a dramatic peroration, soon adopted as one of the slogans of the regime, he urged the need for all to ' "Live dangerously". Indeed, I say to you like an old soldier: "If I go forward, follow me. If I retreat, kill me. If I die, avenge me.'" 
Richard Bosworth (218) Mussolini
 
Campidoglio during the war and today. It was Benito Mussolini who ordered the paving completed to Michelangelo's design in 1940.
 
The statue of Marcus Aurelius in safe-keeping during the war and today whilst a copy remains outside
The Column of Marcus Aurelius, a Doric column featuring a spiral relief built in honour of Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius and modelled on Trajan's Column. The spiral picture relief tells the story of Marcus Aurelius’ Danubian wars waged by him from 166 to his death. The story begins with the army crossing the river Danube, probably at Carnuntum. A Victory separates the accounts of two expeditions. The exact chronology of the events is disputed; however, the latest theory states that the expeditions against the Marcomanni and Quadi in the years 172 and 173 are in the lower half and the successes of the emperor over the Sarmatians in the years 174 and 175 in the upper half. In spite of many similarities to Trajan’s column above, the style is entirely different, a forerunner of the dramatic style of the 3rd century and closely related to the triumphal arch of Septimius Severus, erected soon after. The figures’ heads are disproportionately large so that the viewer can better interpret their facial expressions. The images are carved less finely than at Trajan’s Column, through drilling holes more deeply into the stone, so that they stand out better in a contrast of light and dark. As villages are burned down, women and children are captured and displaced, men are killed, the emotion, despair, and suffering of the "barbarians" in the war, are represented acutely in single scenes and in the figures’ facial expressions and gestures, whilst the emperor is represented as protagonist, in control of his environment.  The symbolic language is altogether clearer and more expressive, if clumsier at first sight, and leaves a wholly different impression on the viewer to the whole artistic style of 100 to 150 as on Trajan’s column.
The Capitoline Museum has changed since the war 

The Dying Gaul in slightly less exalted surroundings and little Drake Winston before a copy at the Nazi-era Museum für Abgüsse Klassischer Bildwerke München
 
Beside Constantine the Great colossus fragments at the Palazzo dei Conservatori, part of the  Capitoline Museum

Trajan's Column in an etching by Giovanantonio Dosio from 1569 on the left and the wife at Trajan's Forum
 
The Plutei of Trajan (Plutei Traiani), carved stone balustrades built for Trajan. They are on display inside the Curia Julia on the Forum Romanum today, but are not part of the original structure. 
Mussolini inaugurating the newly-restored Curia Julia which the Italian government acquired on July 10, 1923 from the Collegio di Spagna for approximately 16,000 Lire. In his Res Gestae, Augustus writes of the project: “I built the Senate House... with the power of the state entirely in my hands by universal consent, I extinguished the flames of civil wars, and then relinquished my control, transferring the Republic back to the authority of the Senate and the Roman people. For this service I was named Augustus by a decree of the Senate”. In fact, this relinquishment of power was truer in word than in deed; the construction of the Curia Julia coincided with the end of Republican Rome.
The Temple of Hadrian on the Campus Martius in Rome built by Hadrian's adoptive son and successor Antoninus Pius in 145 and now incorporated into a later building in the Piazza di Pietra (Piazza of Stone – derived from use of the temple's stones to build the piazza). It was once erroneously known as the Temple of Neptune. One wall of the cella survives, together with eleven of the 15-metre-high Corinthian columns from the external colonnade, on a 4 metre high peperino base. The fixing holes for its original marble covering can still be seen. The building was octastyle and had 15 columns on each long side (four have been lost from the surviving side).  Inside the bank the remains of the non-apsidal naos can be seen, once covered by a barrel vault supported on columns between which were battle-trophies. The base of the columns had reliefs of personifications of the provinces of the empire.
 
The Stadium of Domitian, also known as the Circus Agonalis, was located north of the Campus Martius and commissioned around 80 CE by the Emperor Titus Flavius Domitianus as a gift to the people of Rome to be used mostly for athletic contests. Today the Piazza Navona sits over the interior arena of the Stadium with the sweep of buildings that embrace the Piazza incorporating the Stadium's original lower arcades. In the centre is the Fountain of the Four Rivers with an Egyptian obelisk that had been brought to Rome by the Emperor Caracalla.
 
The Spanish Steps at the turn of the century and today
 
The band of the Irish Brigade plays in front of St Peter's Church in the Vatican City on June 12 1944
 
Santa Maria in Cosmedin before the war and today. The church is the home to la Bocca della Verità (Mouth of Truth), famously shown in the 1953 movie Roman Holiday starring Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck. 

In front of the statue of Giordano Bruno at Piazza Campo de' Fiori where he had been burned at the stake by the Catholic church.
 
The Pyramid of Cestius beside the Porta San Paolo, standing at a fork between two ancient roads, the Via Ostiensis and another road that ran west to the Tiber along the approximate line of the modern Via della Marmorata. Due to its incorporation into the city's fortifications as part of the Aurelian walls, it is today one of the best-preserved ancient buildings in Rome. 



Nearby on via Marmorata is the Palazzo della Posta, inaugurated by Mussolini on October 28, 1935.
Tivoli: The Temple of Vesta outside Rome and remaining statues of the Caryatids in the Canopus at Hadrian's Villa
 Mussolini's Black Shirts prancing outside the Uffizi in Florence and the Monte dei Paschi di Siena on Via dei Pecori bedecked with Nazi flags and today