Forum of Trajan : Michelin's recommendations
The Forum of Trajan was inaugurated by the emperor in 113 A.D. It is the biggest, the finest and best-preserved of all imperial forums. Colossal works had to be performed to lay out the future forum: the Quirinale Hill had to be cut and levelled out ! The forum itself stretched from the foot of the markets to Caesar's Forum. There are remains of the small amphitheatres that lined it and of the Uppia Basilica. Two libraries had been built behind the basilica, and between them stood Trajan's Column. It was designed by Apollodorus of Damascus, was 38 m in height, and retraces more than 100 scenes of Trajan's war against the Dacians, on 17 spiral, sculpted marble drums. It is not only artistically precious, but is a first-class historical document, as its details are so precise. At the top of the column, the emperor had to give way for St. Peter. However, only Trajan's markets can give you some idea of what Ancient Roman everyday life was like. Its 150 shops are perfectly preserved and rise in semicircular tiers above the forum. They also stand against the Quirinal walls and the Via Biberatica runs along their front. The latter still bears its ancient paving stones. Apollodorus of Damascus laid out the whole forum, which is presently being organised into a emotion-packed time-travelling museum.
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