Umbra’s Roman Empire class spent the last weekend following in the footsteps of the city’s greatest emperors, taking in what remains of Marcus Aurelius’ eternal “city of marble”. Armed with walking shoes and the greatest Roman guide of the past 2,000 years, Professor Giampiero Bevagna, students spent a sunny Friday exploring the Foro Romano, or Roman Forum. During the heyday of the Empire, the Roman Forum was the city’s economic and judicial nucleus. Located between the Capitoline and Palatine hills, it is the site of the ruins of the Senate House and the home of the Vestal Virgins, among other important structures. The day concluded with a visit to the nearby Coliseum and some free time in Rome at night.
Saturday found our intrepid students following the route of the entire Triumphal Parade, an ancient path through the streets of Rome. Triumphal Parades were awarded only by Senate decree in celebration of conquering generals , and wound past the capital’s most impressive temples and government buildings. Professor Bevagna encouraged students to imagine a Rome without modern-day roads crisscrossing the ruins, and fathom just how impressive the collection of massive marble buildings were when intact. The afternoon was spent enjoying free time around Rome before heading back to Perugia at night.
Student AnniLauri Villeme noted, “This field trip included information about the Forum, Colosseum, Temples, and all the different buildings that were really important to see first-hand. It totally brought what we have been studying to life. Giampiero can explain complex history in simple terms that improve the experience immensely.”