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All the Obelisks in Rome

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Rome, Italy
All the Obelisks in Rome - The obelisk at St Peter's square, with the pope's apartment building to the left.
All the Obelisks in Rome - The obelisk Minerva near the Pantheon. There is another obelisk right in front of the Pantheon too.
All the Obelisks in Rome - Piazza Popolo and its obelisk at night
All the Obelisks in Rome - The obelisk at Piazza del  Quirnale, in the fountain with Roman statues of Castor and Pollux.

All the Obelisks in Rome Reviews

portia portia
216 reviews
Jul 10, 2006
Rome has 13 of the ancient Egyptian obelisks, the most outside of Egypt! Obelisks were symbols of immortality for the pharoahs. Taken back to Rome as war bounties long ago (most of them). They are found in some of the most beautiful piazzas in Rome, but some are not as easy to spot unless you are looking for them because after (for some) more than 1600 years of being in Rome, they are completely integrated into Rome. Most are mounted on decorative bases, with statues or fountains below. Some become part of sculptures, such as the small 17 ft Minerva Obelisk by Bermini right around the corner from the Pantheon. There is one obelisk without heiroglyphics, and there is a spot in Rome where you can see 3 obelisks at once (see end of this review). If you are in Rome, you can make a game of finding all the obelisks, or at least try to visit/photograph the most number of them. I was in Rome for a week the last time I visited, and I did not even get to see all of them! Of course I did not set aside a day to just visit all of them, but tried to include them into my routes for the day. So I suppose I have to go back and visit the rest someday. The most ancient and tallest of the obelisks is 100 ft high, made of red granite, and came from the Temple of Amun at Thebes. It was erected more than 3500 years ago! Brought to Rome in AD 357 by Constantine II and put up in the Circus Maximus. It fell and broke and was burieid some time between then and 1587, when it was rediscovered and re-erected. Whether just "collecting" them, or admiring the hieroglyphics on them, or looking up the histories behind them, you will get to visit many parts of Rome along the way and have a great time doing it. In the intersection of Via Delle Quarttro Fontain and Via del Quirinale, where there are four small fountains at each of the corners of the buildings, you can see 3 obelisks at once in 3 different directions. (Be careful when you stop in the middle of the street to do this!)
The obelisk Minerva near the Panth…
The obelisk at St Peter's square, …
Piazza Popolo and its obelisk at n…
The obelisk at Piazza del Quirnal…
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