The Forum: The Center of Roman Life

While Europe is home to many impressive plazas, none can match the Forum in Rome. The Forum, originally known as Forum Romanum, was the center of the social and political scene in Rome. Although only its ruins remain today, in its prime, it consisted of the Roman senate, temples, markets, and arches. Moreover, the Forum was the place where speeches, executions, trials, fights, and even elections happened. It was witness to some of the most important events in Roman history.

the forum

The Forum is located in a small valley between the Palatine and Capitoline Hills. Although it was the heart of Rome, the valley was already in use in the Bronze Age. Pre-Roman people probably used this valley as a cemetery and various potteries were discovered during archeological excavations. In addition, the excavations also revealed some offerings indicating that the valley was also a place of worship for religious cults. All in all, these findings made it obvious that the Forum’s location was always popular among the people who lived in the area.

the forum ruins

Historians state that Marc Antony’s famous speech following the death of Caesar was given here in the Forum. This speech was one of the deciding moments in Roman history as it started another civil war for Rome which ended in the death of Brutus.

the forum during sunset

The story of how the Forum’s foundation started goes back to Romulus, the first king of Rome. Romulus was fighting Titus, his archrival whose people occupied the Capitoline Hill. The series of battles was brutal and deadly as there were many injuries and deaths. The women of the nation banded together and stopped the war through prayers and cries. After the war ended, the two leaders agreed to form an alliance and since the valley was between the two hills the armies controlled, they decided it was the perfect middle ground. They established the Forum in this valley and through the centuries, various Roman leaders developed it with Augustus giving it its final shape.

the forum from above
the forum ruined columns
the forum stones
the column at the site
the forum and rome
the arch at the site
the staircases at the site
the column at the site
Marlena & Kurt