Photo By Peter Watts

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Panorama from the inside of the Pantheon. This is a hand held panorama taken early in the day in the Pantheon, one of the top tourist attractions in Rome which rapidly fills with people by the hundreds. The best time to see the Pantheon is early in the morning when you can absorb and contemplate this fantastic building in relative silence.


Pantheon - Rome visitor guide showing a virtual tour of 'Pantheon' linked to an interactive map with local and travel information. 360° panoramas from Roma.

The Pantheon of Romestands on the Plaza della Rotonda. The proper name for the church is 'Santa Maria ad Martyres', but it is always referred to as the Pantheon.

The Pantheon is an ancient Roman building. Whilst it now functions as a church, it was originally built as a temple to the gods (Pantheon - pan=all, theon=the gods). In Roman times the area around the Pantheon was filled with temples and gardens. The Pantheon was built by Hadrian in 128 AD. The Pantheon is still and active church dedicated to S Maria ad Martyres.

Two significant events helped the preservation of the Pantheon. It was converted into a church in 609 - the first temple in Rome to do so, and in 734 pope Gregory III lined the roof with bronze thus helping preserve it. In 667 the Byzantine Emperor Constans II raided the Pantheon and the bronze lining the building, along with all the other bronze he could find in Rome, to be melted down for coins in Constantinople. Normally though, the Popes and authorities took greater care of S Maria ad Martyres.

The Pantheon is unusual in that there is an oculus (hole) the center of the dome. This allows a small measure of sunlight into the interior, and is also open to rain. The dome of the Pantheon is slightly larger than that at St. Peter's. The interior is lined with lush marble and almost entirely intact in it's original form except for the statues that used to line the alcoves. The bronze doors into the Pantheon were rebuilt by pope Pius IV in 1563, but later Bernini pillaged the bronze from the roof (again) to make the baldacchino at St Peter's and 80 cannons for Pope Urban to install in Castel Sant'Angelo.


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I-00186 Rome


Metro: Barberini (A line)

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