ONE WEEK IN ROME - PART 5 | Bed and Rome and Breakfast

domenica 22 gennaio 2017



I came out of the Galleria Esedra and I had in fornt of me the complex of the Baths of Diocletian.
They overlook what officialy is Piazza della Repubblica but that, for most of the Romans, is still Piazza Esedra. That was the name till 1960. It comes from the exedra of the baths; the sqare has been built following exactly its limits. It is one of the most famous and beautiful squares of Rome, a city that is certainly not missing beautiful squares.

Baths of Diocletian
The Baths of Diocletian are really impressive. They were the greatest imperial baths in the ancient Rome, so wisely built that a large part of the buildings are still existing and in use, even if for different purposes. In past centuries the baths were used as a quarry for building materials for the construction of other buildings. A part of the complex was instead demolished in the late nineteenth century to allow the construction of the adjacent Piazza dei Cinquecento and Termini railway station.
Santa Maria degli Angeli
Many people may think that the word Termini has something to do with "teminal". Indeed it comes from thermae, baths. 
Interior view of Santa Maria degli Angeli
What has remained, and it is a lot, is nowadays used as museum space or, in other cases, transformed to churches. Among those, the Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli is particularly notable. It has been designed by Michelangelo Buonarroti, and later modified by Luigi Vanvitelli, using the tepidarium. it is the church used for the official ceremonies of the Italian state.
Once left Piazza dell Repubblica I walked down along Via Nazionale, one of the shopping streets in Rome to turn right to Via delle Quattro Fontane.
San Carlino and one fountain
This street is named after the four fountains  that are placed at the cross with Via XX Settembre and Via del Quiranale. Just at the corner you may see the church of San Carlo (better known as San Carlino) alle Quattro Fontane, one of the masterpieces of Francesco Borromini. This swiss archietct, along with his fierce rival Gian Lorenzo Bernini, characterized the baroque period in Rome.
In fornt of San Carlino there is the back corner of the Quirinale, the presidential palace that was previously the residence of the Pope and later of the Savoia royal family.
Going down from the four fountains cross to Piazza Barberini, you will leave on your left Via Rasella, sadly famous because it was the place where, during the German occupation in World War II, occurred an attack to the German troops that led to the horrible reprisals known as Fosse Ardeatine, from the name of the quarry where 335 comon and political prisoners were killed by the nazists.
Well, once reached Piazza Barberini it's time for another stop for a coffee.


Link to part 4

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