300 IH- Southern Quarters. ROME. b. Forum Romanum :
The Court (220 ft. X 75 ft.) is the most extensive part of the build¬
ing. It was surrounded by a two-storied arcade, with columns of veined
green cipollino marble below and red breccia corallina above, and was
adorned with statues of the Head Vestals (Virgines Vestales Maximae),
of which eleven are stili preserved in whole or in part (see p. 194). The
intervention of the Vestal Virgins was often very effective in procuring
appointments to officiai and even military posts, and the inscriptions
on the bases of some of the statues show that they were erected by
grateful relatives and other recipients of such favours. The names
(Numisia Maximilla, Terentia Flavola, Flavia Publicia, Coelia Claudiana,
Terentia Rullila) belong to the 3rd and 4th cent. (201-364) of our era. In
the centre of the court are three marble-lined cisterns for the reception
of rain-water, as a precept of their cult forbade the priestesses to use
either river-water or water conveyed through artificial channels.
The second division of the palace consists of the Offioial Rooms (?).
In the middle is a lofty square room approached by steps. On each side
of it are three doors giving access to three cells, each of which is sup-
posed to have belonged to one of the six priestesses. — The beautiful
mosaic marble flooring is stili preserved in two rooms of the S. wing,
below the Nova Via and the Palatine. A mill of later date has been
erected within the last rooms in the S.E. corner. In the "W. wing are
the Domestio Offioes , including a kitchen with its fire-place, a store
room with numerous broken bits of pottery, a large leaden water-tank, etc.
The Upper Floor (the keeper of the Forum has the key) comprised
several apartments, including bath-rooms, some of which have been pre¬
served. A wooden staircase ascendsfrom one of the apartments on the
S. side. The upper story commands a good survey of the whole building
as well as a view towards the Basilica of Constantine.
Farther on in the Sacra Via, opposite the tempie of Vesta and
the Regia, on a base 16 ft. above the Street and formerly reached
by a flight of steps, is the —
*Temple of Faustina, of which the portico, with its ten
beautiful columns of Euboean marble (cipollino), and part of the
cella, decorated on the W. side with a marble frieze (griffins and
candelabra), are stili standing. It was dedicated by Antoninus in
A.D. 141 to his wife, the elder Faustina, and to that emperor himself
after his death. The first line of the inscription, Divo Antonio
et | divae Faustinae ex S.C., was then added. In the interior of
the tempie is the church of San Lorenzo in Miranda (PI. II, 19).
The church, which is first mentioned in the 12th cent, and has a
facade of 1602, is of no interest. Its name probably refers to that of
its foundress, some rich Roman lady named Miranda (comp. San Lorenzo
in Damaso and San Lorenzo in Lucina).
In 1902 a very ancient Necropolis (Sepulcretum) was discov¬
ered at the E. angle of the tempie, lying at a great depth below
the surface, and including both ordinary graves and recesses for
cinerary urns. Some of the urns found here, including one in the
shape of a hut, like those from Albano (p. 406), may possibly date
back to the 8th cent. B.C., while the latest cannot be more recent
than the 6th cent., for burial on this site must naturally have
ceased when the Forum became the market-place. The objects found
here are temporarily preserved in a room opposite the Tempie of
Romulus (p. 301), and are shown by special permission only.