The few remains of the Temple of Caesar in the Forum Romanum
The Temple of Caesar was built and dedicated in 29 BC by Augustus to deified Julius Caesar, on the spot where Caesar's body was cremated.Italy / Rome / Forum Romanum
The Temple of Caesar (Aedes Divus Iulius or Templum Divi Iuli) was built by Augustus after the senate deified Julius Caesar after his death. The temple was dedicated August 18th, 29 BCE. It stands on the E. side of the main square of the Forum Romanum, between the Regia, Temple of Castor and Pollux and the the Basilica Aemilia.
After Julius Caesar was murdered, his body was carried to the forum, near the Regia, which was his official residence as pontifex maximus. A funeral pyre was built and his body cremated. Initially a commemorative column was erected on the spot with a dedication to the “father of the fatherland”, but soon after Augustus started the construction of a temple for his adoptive father who the senate had declared a god. The temple was finished and consecrated in 29 BCE.
The temple was built in the Italian style. It rested on a tall podium in opus caementicium with access stairways on the sides of the temple. It was prostyle, hexastyle with two columns on the sides of the pronaos. No columns have survived but the temple was probably of the Corinthian order. In the front of the pronaos there was a semi-circular recess with a small altar inside. This might indicated the location of the funeral pyre. The protective wall in front of the altar was added later by Augustus.The altar of the Temple of Caesar in the Forum Romanum
In front of the temple stood a speakers platform, the Rostra Julia, decorated with the rostra (the beak-like prows of war-ships) from the conquered navy of Antonius and Cleopatra at Actium in 31 BCE. Very little remains of this platform, but it can be seen on the the Plutei of Trajan, two reliefs kept in the Curia Julia.
With the building of the Temple of Caesar the much older buildings of the Regia and the Temple of Vesta was excluded from the Main Square of the Forum. The temple was connected to the Basilica Aemilia by a portico dedicated to Gaius Caesar and Lucius Caesar, Augustus‘ nephews, and by the Arch of Augustus to the Temple of Castor and Pollux, often identified with Tiberius and Drusus. Together with the Basilica Julia and the Curia Julia this all made the whole of the main square of the Forum a massive demonstration of the political supremacy of the Gens Julia.
Of the original temple only the podium and the part of the front with the circular altar remain. Some fragments of decorative reliefs with Victoria and floral ornaments are on display in the Antiquarium.
- LacusCurtius: Platner: A Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome
- LacusCurtius: Hülsen: Il Foro Romano – Storia e Monumenti
(Text in Italian — nice drawing with reconstruction)
Photo gallery for "Temple of Caesar"
There are 7 photos in this gallery.
- Temple of Caesar - Forum Romanum
- View of the Forum Romanum seen from the Palatine hill
Pages related to "Temple of Caesar"
- Basilica Julia
- Curia Julia
- Gaius Caesar
- Lucius Caesar
- Pontifex maximus
Pages referring to "Temple of Caesar"
- Arch of Augustus
- Basilica Aemilia
- Central square
- Julius Caesar
- Plutei of Trajan
- Temple of Castor and Pollux
- Temple of Vesta
Leave a Reply Cancel replyLast updated on: 6 August 2003
Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These cookies do not store any personal information.Non-necessary
Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website.