The piazza Colonna is located right in the heart of Rome and directly opposite you will find the Italian Parliament. Not far from the temple of Hadrian, his son Commodus dedicated a temple to Markus Aurelius. To this complex belonged also the column of Markus Aurelius which stands today in the middle of Piazza Colonna.
Erected in 180 AD, year of the death of Markus Aurelius, in honour of the emperor. It was modelled on Trajan's column in the Forum of Trajan. The column stood on a high base, part of which is still underground, at its summit was the bronze statue of the emperor.
The pillar - 30 meters high - consists of 28 drums of Carrara marble 3,70mt in diameter. As in Trajan's column, the spiral relieves, that entirely cover it, describe the military life of the emperor. Their details reveal 116 episodes separated in two parts by an allegorical figure of Victory among trophies, in the inferior part is represented the war against the Marcoman in the upper part against the Sarmatian tribes.
The style of the relieves show a tendency to simplification compared to the Hellenistic tradition, the figures tend to detach from the background and anticipate the expressionistic style of the following centuries. The figure of Markus Aurelius is almost always represented frontally in order to underline the majesty of the emperor. A 190-step interior spiral staircase illuminated by 56 little windows, leads to the summit, where the statue in bronze of St. Paul replaced that of Aurelius.
In the Middle Ages the column belonged to the monastery of S.Silvestro in Capite that received alms from the pilgrims who wished to climb to the top.
to this day the Piazza Colonna is a major Roman landmark and tourists flock from all over the world to gawp at its' intricate design and interesting architectural features ... Rome Hotels Direct is lucky enough to have quite a few hotels located in the immediate vicinity of Piazza Colonna they are the Hotel Colonna Palace a luxury 4 star hotel with rooftop jacuzzi spa bath which looks down onto the square. Other hotels include the Sole al Pantheon the oldest hotel in Rome , the Delle Nazioni Hotel which recently refurbished now provides some of the finest Accommodation Four Star in Rome and many many more like the Luxury rooms with rooftop terrace in Rome which we will mention more about on the Trevi Fountain page.