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from the present condition of the
I am surprised that some antiquaries should have been so far mistaken, as to make any other monument than this mausoleum
the tomb intended by Virgil in in these beautiful lines in the sixth book of the Æneid:
Shtaafs tile <virum magnam Mdvir
tis ad urbem Campus a get gemitus, <vel qua,
Tiberinc, 'videbis Funera, cum lumulum prœterla
First, this mausoleum faced the Campus Mattius, which in Augustus's time was still without the circuit of Rome. . Secondly, it was between the Tiber and the Flaminian road which crossed the Cam. piis Maftius. Thirdly, Augustus, according to Suetonius, had begun it in his sixth consulship; and Marcellus died in the eleventh consulship of his uncle, who reckoned his intermediate consulships by the years: now, supposing the building of this mausoleum to have taken up four or five years, it had been just finished when Marcellus died.
On beholding these august ruins, the place of the Scipios tomb, the remains of the funeral monuments of so many heroes, who raised Rome to such power and glory, it is natural for the mind to fall intp that reflection, which they produced in Lucretius.
Tu wero dubitabis et indignahtii
obire, Mortua cui •vita ejl jam •vwi it
Near the entrance of Augustus's mausoleum stood two obelisks, of which Sixtus V. caused one to be removed, and set up facing the
north torth front of Santa Maria Majore: the other is said to be still buried in the- rubbish by which the ground of Rome has been so prodigiously raised, especially in this • part. They were without hieroglyphics, and doubtless the very fame which, as Pliny informs us, were by Augustus's order cut in the quarries of Upper Egypt.
The many monuments of this • kind brought from Egypt to Rome, but afterwards thrown down from their pedestals, and the greater part of them since set up again by Sextus V. are the most singular tokens of the grandeur of this ancient capital of the universe. I thought it very strange that most of them, should have been placed in the lobbies of the largest edifices, the proximity of which buries them, anil destroys a great part of their effect. The only one retaining its proper place is that in the square Del Popolo: the like advantages lay open to others; they should have been distributed in the several squares of Rome.
I have had a very close view of that obelisk which Augustus, in the beginning of his reign, erected ' to the fun in the centre of the Campus Martius. Being thrown down together with irs base, it-had for several ages lain buried under ruins, and afterwards under houses built among those ruins. To some it was part of the foundation; to others it was the cellar wall; and in several it had been the chimney back or hearth, by which last use, of course, all the parts exposed to the fire for ages have been defaced. At last, Benedict XIV. clearing it of all these incumbrances, had a design of setting it up again: rt is broken in four places; a common
misfortune to those which Sixtus V. restored to their honour. To rei. pair the calcined part is a difficulty which Sixtus the Vth's architect had not to deal with: this however may perhaps be answered by a new polish or veneering.
The hieroglyphics still visible on all the sound parts are in relievo, though, at first sight, they seem intagliatas; the space taken up by each figure being so groo\ed, that the most prominent parts of the relievo are lower than the surface of the block in which they stem enchased; an expedient, no doubt, contrived for securing these parts of the relievo from the frictions which those enormous masses muit have undergone . in the several operations for the transportation of them, raising them on the pedestals, &c. These hieroglyphics, it must be observed, are of a most excellent workmanship.'
Near the obelisk of the Carrpus Martius lies its base, an enormous cube of the fame granite as the obelisk, and on it an inscription' in Roman letters, in the molt exact proportion; but the inscription itself is quite plain and artless, saying little more than that Augustus, Aigupto cAi'ta, dedicated that monument to the fun. I felt a pleasure in viewing this basis and its inscription, from considering that Virgil, Horace, and all „. the great men and wits of Augustus's court, had once been taken op with the fame object.
Emperor's Palace. The palace, which so many emperors had embellished and enriched, is now totally buried under its ruins; so 'that the f.iface of it is only a park, planted with yews and 'cypresses. cypresses. That it still covers inestimable treasures, there is the more reason to believe, as it is the place which, of all others, has been the least searched. This ground belongs to the house os Farnese, as a fief conferred by Paul III. on his son Peter Lewis Farnese. This mine of riches, whether from neg- • ligence, or the jealousy of its proprietors, lay untouched till the year 1720. From the discoveries then made, M. Bianchini formed his Hifiory of the Ptilace ofthe Cæsars, published in 1758. The two colossuses, now in the gardens of Colorno, were part of those discoveries.
I have heard at Rome, that it was among these ruins M. Bianchini met with the unhappy accident mentioned in the eulogium of that gentleman by M. Fontenelle, who, it may be presumed, had not a true account of the following particulars of it. M. Bianchini, not less estimable for his piety than his extensive knowledge, had presided over the works and discoveries carried on in the year 1726. The cessation of these works only whetted his inclination for enlarging those discoveries; and prompted by his ardent desire, he used to frequent these ruins, attended by his servant, who with a pick-axe explored such places as seemed the most promising. Whilst busied in a spot where the sounding of the surface denoted a large cavity, the ground gave way under him, so that he fell perpendicularly into a subterraneous place; on the edges of which he was kept up by his elbows, without his feet reaching . the ground; his age, stature, and repleteness, allowing him but little agility, his efforts, aud those of his
servant to get him up, only widened the aperture, and broke away the support on which his elbows rested. In this extremity, M. Bianchini, undaunted at the apparent certainty of his fate, repeated the prayers for those who are at the point of death; and his servant being at length quite spent, he fell from the height of about thirty feet on a heap of rubbish; here he called out that he was not hurt, asking sot a light that he might improve this accident: accordingly he found himself in a vast saloon with fresco paintings. All his hurt seemed only • a very, flight contusion, but the consequences carried him to his grave within two years.
The imperial palace stood on "the south-west side of the Foram Romanum, which eastward was terminated by Titus's triumphal arch, which to this day forms one of its outlets. On the interior face of one of the pillars of this arch is represented the candlestick wilji seven branches, which, among other spoils from Jerusalem, had adorned Titus's triumph on that signal occasion. The Jewish quarter being near this monument, they, to save themselves the afflictive fight of such an object, have purchased of the government the privilege of opening a narrow passage, which sideways from the arch opens a communication between their quarter and the Forum Romanum, or Campo Vaccino. I have seen some persons so void of sentiment and justice, as to sneer at that unhappy people for a delicacy, arising from those rare and sublime principles, which dictated the psalm Super finmina Babylonis.
Opposite to the ruins of the emperor's palace, and on the nonhead east side, of the . Campo Vaccino, are those of the temple of Peace. Some large roofs, which make the most considerable part of these ruins, have been walled in towards the Campo, and are now the receptacle or stable for the horned cattle of which the Campo is the market. Thus the Forum Romanam is returned exactly to the very fame condition in which Æneas found it on his coming to Evander.
Pajjim armenta videntur' Romanoque foro & la:ttis mugire carinis.
All this part of Rome was, during its highest prosperity, the' best inhabited, and now is taken up by churches and convents. Rome may be said to have removed into the Campus Martius and the plain along the Tiber, of which that field made a part. Cities not only become extinct, they 'likewise change their place. Among those which-I have seen, Lyons, Marseilles, Ancona, &c. have like Rome come down from the mountains, where their founders had placed them, and which they had long occupied, to extend themselves along the levels.
Chronological Dissertation on the Common Sewers.
Ponimus cJoacas inter magnified, fays Justus Lipfius, in his Considerations on the Roman grandeur; it forties has inter illos splendorcs. And in reality, perhaps, never was work, intended for public service, carried to such a pitch of grandeur. Distributed among the vaL lies within the first "inclosures of Rome, and continually refreshed
by copious springs, they emptied themselves into the T'ber, through the valley which separates mount Aventirie from the Palatine.
Such is the solidity of their construction, that they have withstood the depredations of ages, and several both inward and outward causes of decay. I have seen the Cloaca maxima, at its issue into the Tiber: it is from twelve to fifteen feet in breadth, with the like height. I could not but admire the enormous blocks of which it is built, the stability of the arch, and the regularity of its form, which has not failed in any one part, though the stones are joined bare, without mortar or cement.
Admiration increases on considering the depth of the excavations and the trenches which this kind of building required; and that, farther, it was the work of Rome's second century, that is, when Rome was only an irregular heap of cottages.
lie canna J! a min ib usque domes.
Indeed, if ancient and modern historians are to be credited, the Cloaca maxima was only part of such undertakings in the time of Tarquin the elder, who, according to those historians, laid the foundation of the Capitol, lining the Tarpeian rock with a huge body of masonry (fubstruRio) still existing; who confined the bed of the Tiber by a quay, distinguished, even in the most polite ages of Rome, by the denomination of Pulcbrum littus; who encompassed Rome with a stone wall; and lastly, who began the great Circus, which could hold one hundred and fifty thousand spectators. Yet at the first > census
%. in in the following reign, the number os inhabitants, both of Rome and its territory, did not much exceed eighty thousand; all husbandmen, living on the produce of their grounds and the work of their hands; all warriors, without pay, and engaged in continual war; all handicrafts-men, either by calling or necessity.
In many countries the difficulties concerning works much inferior to these are cleared up at once, by attributing them to fairies, to sorcerers, and even to the devil himself;, and I own I should as soon be for giving to them the honour of all the edifices and constructions attributed to' Tarquin, especially the sewers in question, as to that very limited sovereign of an infant unsettled state, and which never so much as thought of coining money till three hundred years after.
The Romans of the mo'e enlightened ages could not but fee into this contradiction. Pliny was aware of it;, but, to avoid overthrowing one of the mairi foundations of the conceit entertained by the Romans, and the nations whom they had subdued, relating to <he grandeur of the eternal city, even in its infancy, he supposes that in building the Cloaca maxima Tarquin had set all the people of Rome to work. And, to help out this supposition, he makes Tarquin treat th<:m with a severity of which most despotic states scarce afford an instance. "If any," fays he, "were discouraged by the length *' and dangers of the work, so as "to give thejrjselves up to despair, "and deprive themselves of life, "Tarquin caused their bodies to "be nailed cross-wise, and thus '■ left unburied to the vultures and
"other birds of prey." In qui, adds Pliny, pudor Ramani nominis pnpriut qui sttpe res perdites ferva•uit en prœliis, tune qitoquesubvenh.
But this circumstance, so little agreeable to the constitution of Rome, even under its kings, and of which no mention is made before Pliny, cannot convince me of the main fact.
Some more clear particulars thaw those which Dionyfius Halicamassæus himself relates concerning the first inhabitants of Latium, might discover the real authors of thus construction which bears so near a resemblance to many others erected in the most remote times; times, when that part of Italy between the two seas, was covered with towns, dwellings, and inhabitants, before the Roman name was fo much as known.
At least it is certain from Livy, that before the Trojans, according to the Roman notion, brought their household gods into Latium, a colony of Arcadians had already settled on the mount Palatine; a cobnj of the same kind, and doubtless of the fame date, as all those the conjunction of which had formed ItalicGreece, which the Greeks tbemsei ves, by way of excellence, called Great Greece. Philosophy, the art» and sciences, had flourished in this fine country, before Romulus had made himself known there, bj his asylum and the rape of the Sabines. • ■»■*'
It is even very probable, that colonies prior to the emigrations of the Greeks, had taken care to display, in their public works, a grandeur expressive of their power and prosperity. The silence of historians concerning these ancient foundations, is amply compensated