Forum Boarium

From Academic Kids

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Boariumlauvernier.jpg
The Boarium Forum by D. Lauvernier

The Forum Boarium was the cattle forum venalium of Ancient Rome and the oldest forum that Rome possessed. It was located at a flat place near the Tiber between the Capitoline, the Palatine and Aventine hills. Here, too, is where the first bridges were built. The Boarium was by the premier port of Rome (Port Tibernius), and experienced intense commercial activity.

The site was a also a religious center housing the Temple of Hercules Victor, the Temple of Portunes, and the massive 6th or 5th century BC Great Altar of Hercules.

Temple of Hercules Victor (T. Herculis Victoris). The temple of Portunus on the right. Etching by , mid 18th century.
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Temple of Hercules Victor (T. Herculis Victoris). The temple of Portunus on the right. Etching by Giuseppe Vasi, mid 18th century.

The Temple of Hercules Victor or Hercules Olivarius (Hercules as protector of the olive trade), is a circular 2nd century BC building in the corinthian style (capitals with acanthus leaves.)

The Temple of Portunes is a rectangular building (built between 100 and 80 B. C), Ionic in style (capitals with characteristic volutes). It is built of tufa and travertine with a stucco surface.

The Forum Boarium was the site of the first gladiatorial contest at Rome which took place in 264 BC as part of aristocratic funerary ritual, a munus or funeral gift for the dead. Decimus Junius Brutus put on a gladiatorial combat in honor of his deceased father with three pairs of slaves serving as gladiators.

At the end of the Roman Empire, the area became overtaken with shops.


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