Campania Trip Write-Up

Angela Monafo and Charlie Dunn

Day 64, November 17

Terracina

 

We started the day in Terracina, leaving the Albergo Lido and riding up to the temple of Jupiter Auxor. The temple commanded an impressive view over the Apennine mountain range and the Tyrrhenian Sea. From there we could see the only turn of the Via Appia and the site where Trajan cut back the mountains to straighten the path. This truly would have been a strategic location for the Romans, who conquered the Volscan town (Auxor) and set up a colony in 329 BC. From there they were able to control the land routes to Rome.

 

The scanty remains of the temple were interesting but more impressive was the arcade, upon which the temple sat, built into the side of the mountain. The arcade was made up of running barrel vaults, similar to Praeneste, and would have been an impressive sight from both land and sea. While viewing the arcade, Professor Stewart reminded us about the Roman use of optics and showed us how light was used to create a shadow aesthetic in the arcade.

 

Then we went down to the ancient forum of Terracina, which now serves as the central piazza of the town. While the museum there was unfortunately closed, we were still able to see the inscription on the original travertine stone pavement ŇA Aemilius A F stravitÓ translated as Aulus Aemilius son of Aulus laid it. From this inscription we could see the presence of the great Roman families in the areas outside of Rome and that these families were not hesitant to immortalize their family name. We also saw a statue base set up by a freedman of Augustus. Professor Stewart explained how Augustus used his freed slaves to perform administrative work and to keep an eye on the empire. After an unsuccessful search for gelato, we boarded the bus for Cori.

 

In Cori we ascended a high hill destined to see the temple of Hercules, which is located on the summit of the city. When we finally arrived, we noted that the temple was rather unusual in form. While the triglyphs, metopes, and Doric columns suggested a Greek temple design, the high podium and the frontal temple layout was more indicative of an Italic design. When we had concluded our study, we searched for lunch and finally found a nice restaurant where we enjoyed our last meal on the road.

 

After a late lunch, we boarded the bus for the long drive back to Rome, arriving in time for everyone to settle in and prepare for the final week of the program. After three weeks outside of Rome, we were glad to be back!

This was the southern view from the temple of Jupiter Auxor

 

The remains of the temple from behind, whith parts of the podium and back walls still standing

 

The barrel vaults of the arcade under the temple.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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