For 99% of the tourist that visit Rome, the Pantheon is for sure on the check list. Everyday thousand and thousand of tourist goes to the Piazza della Rotonda, in the center of the historical city of Rome to visit the famous Pantheon. The architect is really impressive and the atmosphere around the Pantheon with many restaurants and coffee shops make this place even more attractive and full of energy.
Even today, almost 2000 years after its construction, the breathtaking pantheon is a remarkable building to see. The spectacular design, proportions, elegance and harmony are a striking reminder of the architecture of the great Roman Empire. When Michelangelo saw this wonder for the first time he said that it looks more like the work of angels, not humans.
The Pantheon is definitely a stop, a place to take a lot of photos and register the moments.
The exact age of the pantheon remains unknown. The Roman legend tells that the original Pantheon was built on the very site and was dedicated to Romulus, their mythological founder, after he ascended to heaven from that site. Most historians claim that Emperor Augustus right hand, Agrippa, built the first Pantheon in 27 BC. It burned in the great fire of 80 AD, was rebuilt by Emperor Domitian, but was struck by lightning and burned again in 110 AD. The Pantheon as we know it today was built in 120 AD by Emperor Hadrian Who was passionate with architecture and designed it together with Apollodorus of Damascus, a famous Greek architect of the time who unfortunately was executed by order of the Emperor, because of an argument about the design of the temple…
The most fascinating part of the Pantheon is its giant dome, with its famous hole in the top (The eye of the Pantheon, or oculus). The dome was the largest in the world for 1300 years and until today it remains the largest unsupported dome in the world! The diameter of the dome is 43.30 meters or 142ft (for comparison, the United States Capitol dome is 96 feet in diameter) and is in perfect proportion with the Pantheon by the fact that the distance from the floor to the top of the dome is exactly equal to its diameter.
In the year 609 The Pantheon was the first pagan temple to be transformed into a church and therefore it was saved from being destroyed during the middle Ages. Today it is a church dedicated to St. Mary of the Martyrs. None the less it is called the Pantheon by virtually everybody and it seems to exist independent of religious rule but more of a tribute to the past.
If you want to visit the Pantheon is completely free and open everyday.
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