The Digital Piranesi
This page was created by Erin Jones. The last update was by Jeanne Britton.
Side View of the Capitoline Hill
Most prominent among these remains is one of the two trophy statues of Augustus, one of which the previous image depicts in miniature and from behind. These so-called trophies, sources of particular fascination for Piranesi, are composites of battle implements that were seized from a defeated enemy and assembled on wooden frame. Numbered annotations instruct viewers to observe significant elements. In the background, from a high window in the Capitoline Museum (4), a viewer looks north over the Piazza. From a perch the Tabularium, which runs along the rear side of the neighboring Senatorial Palace, Abbondio Rezzonico, the Senator of Rome honored in the indication of the palace (2), often invited guests, including Piranesi, to enjoy sweeping southeastern views of the Forum. The Tabularium is visible from the Forum in this view of the Arch of Septimus Severus. Piranesi did in fact sketch the Forum from the palace’s elevated position, which affords the view depicted in the following image. Between the two previous views of the Piazza di Campidoglio and the following view of the Forum, this image serves as something of a transition from modern to ancient, from façade to fragment. With its vantage point, composition, and annotations, this view emphasizes the preserved and fragmented remnants of antiquity that, beginning with the view of the Forum sketched from one of the buildings here, are the subject of the rest of this volume. (JB)
To see this image in the Vedute di Roma, volume 17 of Piranesi’s Opere, click here.