We Were Surprised To Find A Pyramid In Rome!

We were really surprised to find a pyramid in Rome while wondering about my neighbourhood. It was build by Caius Cestius. He was known to be a very wealthy man and member of a group of priests responsible for sacred banquets. He passed away in 12 BC. The Pyramid was modeled from the sacred pyramidical tombs.

All About The Roman Pyramid

The pyramid was constructed in a mere 330 days. It's more than 36 meter high and 29,5 meter wide (118x97ft). It was built of concrete and brick on a travertine foundation and covered with carrara marble blocks. Thanks to the use of concrete it was possible to build a pyramid with a sharper angle. It's size is relatively taller than those in Egypt.

On the east and west sides are inscriptions with the names and titles of Caius Cestius. A corridor at the northern side led to the burial chamber. The walls of the rectangular chamber, which measured 6 by 4 meter (20x13ft), were decorated sumptuously with frescoes and panels framing female figures.

The pyramid was originally surrounded by four columns and flanked by two bronze figures, now in the Musei Capitolini at the Capitoline Hill.

The interior is badly preserved; but the exterior has survived relatively well thanks to the incorporation of the pyramid into the Aurelian wall in 275 BC. Its marble casing was restored in the XIIth century.

Only three Egyptian pyramids - the main pyramids of Gizeh - are taller than this Roman imitation. It really says something about the wealth of Romans during the reign of emperor Augustus. When a single citizen (Caius Cestius) built this pyramid in Rome; he believed he was worthy of Pharaohs.

Location Of The Pyramid

The Pyramid of Caius Cestius can be found at the southern edge of ancient Rome, near the Porta San Paolo, part of the Aurelian Wall. The subway station 'Pyramide' is right across the square.

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