01 Class: Introduction to Constantine’s Rome

Our visions of Rome now include

Modern city



Roman Forum: the Temple of Saturn



Michelangelo Moses images

Our story: from here

The Hadrianic Tondi on the Arch of Constantine FOLLOWING HADRIAN

Arch of Constantine


To here:

Basilica di San Pietro in Vaticano September 2015-1a.jpg

St Peters


Some main themes

  1. Rome as a center in world history
  2. Rome as the center of the Latin church
  3. Rome as a political player in central Italy and beyond
  4. Rome as center of monumental buildings and art
  5. The development of urban spaces

Sources: primary and secondary



  • History of art and architecture
  • Archaeology

Italo Gismondi (1887-1974)

1935-71 worked  Plastico: Museo della Civiltà Romana

Maps Rome Forma Urbis Romae

(Museo della Civilta Romana, Rome, Italy/De Agostini Picture Library/Bridgeman Images) Fragment of Forma Urbis Romae DIMENSIONS: 26 inches by 23.6 inches. FOUND: Rome, Italy.    (203-208 CE)

Rome Reborn: Bernard Frischer

Yorescape: Bernard Frischer

Background: up to age of Constantine

Traditional founding April 21, 753 BCE

Kings: to 510 BCE

Republic: Consuls; senate

Princeps and principate: Octavian (27 BCE-14 CE)

Expansion: continues through 2nd c CE

3rd Century: general economic, social crisis

Diocletian (284-305): reforms

4 administrative units, 2 co-emperors

Emperor Constantine the Great Facts - Istanbul Clues


Constantine  (306-337)

Reforms continue

313 recognizes Christianity (Edict of Milan)

324 decision to rebuild Byzantium as capitol; dedicated 330

Milan as western capital

401-2: Ravenna as western capital


The City:

270-75 Aurelian walls

Population estimates:800,000-1,000,000+

Trajan’s Market


Trajan’s market; main hall, 2007

Gismondi: Insula, Ostia

Reconstruction, House of Diane (CC BY-SA 3.0) (source)