Day Eight was a cloudy/rainy day. I started out early to get to my 9 am reservation at the Borghese Gallery. I had two hours in the museum and no photos were allowed.
I was impressed by Bernini’s Baroque statues of classical myths – Daphne and Apollo, Aeneas, Anchises and Ascanius, Rape of Proserpina, and David. Also his self-portraits and portraits of Cardinal Scipione Borghese. These date from the 1600s and are in Cardinal Borghese’s villa from that period. After my museum visit I wandered through the Borghese Gardens.
Below the gardens is the Piazza del Popolo. The obelisk in the piazza was built by Ramses II in Egypt in the 1200s BC. It was brought to Rome by Augustus in 10 BC and was erected by him in the centre of the Circus Maximus. In subsequent centuries it was buried among the ruins until it was unearthed and moved to Piazza del Popolo in 1589.
In Piazza del Popolo there are three churches to Santa Maria – Santa Maria del Popolo, Santa Maria dei Miracoli and Santa Maria in Montesanto.
I spent the rest of the afternoon walking around Rome looking at various sites, including the Mausoleum of Augustus.
The Ara Pacis, or altar of Peace built by the Roman Senate to honour Augustus, was reconstructed by Mussolini and since 2006 has been sheltered in a modern building.
At the corner of the site is the edge of Magnus Pompey’s theatre known as Pompey’s Portico. It was here where Julius Caesar was assassinated.
I ended my meandering tour of Rome at the Campo de’ Fiori market.