Today was the first of a couple days of bath complexes. We visited the Baths of Caracalla, a massive complex built between 212-216 and equivalent in size to 13 FIFA soccer fields! We don’t have things like this in the modern world; neat to imagine being able to visit such a complex for free, getting some exercise, a bath, and a swim. We then walked back towards the Circus Maximus to discuss the Septizodium (a free-standing façade with fountains that basically served as a giant Severan billboard, now represented by a line of cypress trees) and Severan palace expansion on the Palatine. We also visited the Arch of the Argentarii (on which are a couple of reliefs which are missing 3 of their original 6 members due to damnationes memoriae). We finished by walking over to the Capitoline to view the Arch of Septimius Severus in the Forum. We were supposed to visit the Centrale Montemartini museum, but there was a museum strike in the afternoon.
After lunch with Susanne and some others at Abruzzi (spinach and yummy lasagna), Mike, Nicole, & I headed to the museum to head anyone off that hadn’t heard about the strike before visiting S. Pietro in Vincoli to look at Michelangelo’s Moses. We then took the subway to St. Peter’s and climbed the steps all the way up to the cupola of the dome—very claustrophobic climb, but it’s the most amazing view of Rome!
We waited for the bus for a while before deciding to walk (during which, of course, the bus passed us), just making it back for dinner—salad, risotto, spinach soufflé, and a chocolate pudding cake of sorts.