It is known that the new palaces of Rome were built above the remains of houses, villas and monuments of Rome. Rome secret city.
For example, Via del Corso already existed in ancient Rome and more or less it was located at the same point where it is today, only the name changed, Via Lata (via wide).
Under the modern buildings there is always something from the ancient Rome, as in the case of Palazzo Valentini, a stone’s throw from Piazza Venezia.
The Palace dates back to the end of the 16th century and today is the seat of the Province of Rome. Already in the course of its construction and during the subsequent expansion works, many findings have emerged but above all a wonderful glimpse of Imperial Rome.
And in recent years has been made visible to all, giving those who visit a multi-sensory experience that involves all 5 senses through the use of new technologies
Here on the ancient walls emerge the glimpses of Rome, we see again built rooms, decorations, mosaics .. an example of how we can revive 360 degrees the heritage that only Rome has throughout the world.
Under Palazzo Valentini two domus were discovered, that is, two houses belonging to extremely rich people whose identity is unknown, perhaps they were senators or administrators of the city. Surely it was patricians, people who belonged to the elite of Roman society.
Here we see the mosaic that decorated the room of the triclinium, where the banquets took place, and the geometries found and reconstructed can be traced back more or less to the Constantinian age of the fourth century. And then we can imagine everything that was around this mosaic thanks to the projection of the reconstructions with candlesticks, lamps, a door that opens to another environment. An environment of representation with its majestic Corinthian columns and precious marbles, a bright and open environment with a pool, impluvium, in the center that served as a collector of rainwater.
Continuing the exploration, one will reach one of the most sumptuous rooms, the apsis room, a representative environment where the owner received his guests and the library, the place that most represented the strength of the owner in ancient Rome, that is the culture . Only a few had one inside the house, the books were shaped like scrolls, but books were already beginning to exist as we know them today.
It was an era when they began to study the stars, the movement of the stars and then the ceiling was probably decorated by a starry sky as if to represent this new interest.
A little further we enter a room used as a banquet. In the fourth century, the tables were shaped in a radial pattern and all the guests looked at each other.
Another room adjacent to the triclinium full of rare and precious marbles and colored plasters. In these houses there were also service areas such as the kitchen and we can imagine them smells, there were particular recipes: flamingo tongues, ostrich meat or even peacock brains.
There was no shortage of warehouses and stores containing every kind of material coming from every part of the empire, stalls with horses and wagons.
Surely this domus had at least two floors and in the upper part there were the bedrooms of the Romans, small rooms but with small windows that opened onto a very particular view of Rome, like the famous Trajan column.
The undergrounds of Palazzo Valentini have also preserved the remains of baths, most probably private. We can see the remains of the calidarium. The heating of the baths was created by creating a hot air oven that was passed under the floor and in the walls thanks to special interspaces. The temperature inside the calidarium could exceed 50 degrees and it is for this reason that the Romans used wooden clogs to move within this environment.
But in the baths there was also a cold environment, the so-called frigidarium, and here a small and a larger basin were brought to light. Thanks to the reconstructions made we can admire how much luxury reigned inside the baths.
At a certain point, however, everything was abandoned, why?
It was not the fault of the Barbarians but for something even more destructive, the earthquake. In 538 AD Rome was struck by a violent earthquake and the signs of that devastation are still visible in the cracks still imprinted on the marble, on the remains of the first floor down, on the remains of the amphorae.
These remains mark the beginning of the oblivion of Rome because when the earthquake occurred Rome had fallen, no longer had the wealth of once to put back one of the most beautiful residential complexes in the city that today we have today thanks to the technology the luck of to see.
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