Temple of Venus, Rome, Italy
Reflections on Travelling
This week I decided to look back through some of my travel images, and this one caught my eye. This is the Temple of Venus in Rome, Italy, which we visited 7 years ago this week.
It’s funny when you travel as you plan things out and on this particular day the plan was to see the Church of Saint Peter in Chains, San Pietro in Vincoli, and then go to the Colosseum. We were on a tour and had just seen the amazing statue, by Micaelangelo, of Moses in the church, and were going out a door that faces towards the street and the Colosseum beyond. Almost everyone in the tour group rushed to the left to see the huge structure that is the arena, but straight ahead was what caught my eye. The Temple of Venus, just as it had looked in my Religious Studies books from University!
For some background, the Temple of Venus was begun by Emperor Hadrian, in about 121 AD, so you’re looking at a building that is almost 2,000 years old! It’s been hit by earthquakes, fire and been ransacked and looted over the millenia, but there it stands to this day, an impressive building that once was at the heart of Roman cultural life.
The tour guide took us through the Colosseum, which is itself very interesting, and he quickly mentioned the Temple as we walked to another site, but still, I couldn’t help but stare at what I knew to be such an important building and wonder at the things that that place had witnessed. Rome is so much fun that way – there is history all around you – but it is the finding of spots where history was written that is so exciting about the place.
I could have also chosen an image I got of St. Peter's Basilica and talked about the very spot my 39th great grandfather was crowned emperor (that would be Charlemagne on Christmas Day in 800 AD), but that story is for another day!
As Rick Steeves says – “keep on travelling!”