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The legend tells that Romulus and Remus, who founded Rome, were adopted by a
she-wolf (lupa) hence ‘she-wolf’ became the symbol of Rome. She-wolf is an
ambiguous word by which the roman prostitutes were referred and the word
‘lupanare’ (brothel) is also derived from lupa.
The legend suggests that Acca Laurentia, the wife of Faustulus, shepherd of
Numitor, saved the lives of Romulus and Remus. The shepherd’s wife who had
found the twins and who very likely adopted them, was she-wolf, a prostitute.
The populace passed on the origins of the Eternal City with many tales; we can say
metaphorically, that Rome is born with an inclination towards chaos. Ancient
Rome, both republican and imperial, had plenty of brothels, even though they
were placed in the suburbs of the town. Romans paid frequent visits to the
brothels mainly for erotic purposes. They favoured the mercenary love intended
as a peculiar pleasure, and in their turn, many women –honest matrons –
disguised themselves as ‘she-wolves’ in order to attend the brothels and enjoy
the unidentified services. Messalina, the wife of, Emperor Claudius, camouflaged
herself under false names and common dresses in order to participate in the
brothels’ life.
Not to overly dwell on dark images of sexuality, this form of ‘eroticism’, besides a
state of heritage of the origins of Rome, was due to the cult of Venus Ericina, who
was the symbol of fertility, therefore, of sensual love and as such, was the reason
why she was worshipped, unlike the Hellenic Venus who was the symbol of beauty
and chastity.
According to Aristotle and his syllogisms, the practice of the prostitution in Rome
at the time of its Empire comes from religious reasons.
Grazia Brasi
Centro Guide Roma


caravaggio-bacchino-malato.jpgIn the occasion of the 4th centenary of the death  of Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio,on
February 20th opened up the exhibition dedicated to him and going on until June 13th.

We will find his works coming from all over the world, for the first time gathered in an exhibition
also telling us about his tormented life through 30 out of his 40 paintings.
Only the works clearly signed up by the master were chosen, leaving aside those attributed to
his work-shop.

The artist who painted revolutionary and shocking canvasses commissioned by the Church and other
wealthy lovers of art, full of a deep religious feeling but  even of such a tormented and harsh realism
to make customers feel so embarassed to sometimes prefer to refuse his works.
The artist who was painting during the night, maybe while drinking wine, or taking a walk with his friends
through the old Roman alleys, taking part to riots and fights and even brutal crimes.
But no other painter was ever able to render such a tangible reality of life through that mysterious darkness
and that filtering and almost divine light which still capture our eyes and our souls.

It is worth taking this trip through his works of art, especially now that they are concentrated in one only

Lorenza Faraone
Roman Guide Centre

TEL: 06/39967500 – 06/696270  FAX: 06/696271



Ever since the earliest times, water has played an important role in the life of the city, a source of health and hygiene, but also part of the classical quest for beauty.

Water flowed constantly into ancient Rome along eleven major aqueducts expertly built by Roman engineers and was distributed to every district in the city. The carefully regulated flow was then piped to fountains, palaces, villas, apartment blocks and arenas not only to quench the population’s thirst but also to supply the cisterns and pools of the many public and private baths. Water was not only a basic necessity but also a decorative element incorporated into the architectural fabric of the city. Monumental cascades, nymphaeums of all sizes, artificial lakes and water-features were highly fashionable then, as later on in Papal times from the fifteenth century onwards. Rome is still today a city of magnificent squares and striking fountains witnessing the ideals of Renaissance beauty to recreate the glory of Antiquity,  a constant source of inspiration and renewal.At the time of the Empire over one million Roman citizens had 1000 litres of water available per head per day, and now? The city counts three million inhabitantsand each person has 500 litres of water a day. A real privilege! Visitors to Rome can drink the fresh water at any time from the 2,500 little street fountains called nasoni (big noses), cylindrically shaped and made of cast iron or travertine stone. At home tap water is generally excellent, considered among the best in Italy, according to a recent study on Italian drinking water involving 35 cities.A water sample was taken in Saint Peterʼs Square to check the quality, and the calcium level, hardness, fluoride and sulphate levels, low pollution factors and absence of solvents or metals, make it excellent. “Rome water is good quality and safe” declared Mrs Silvia Castronovi of Altroconsumo, a consumer organisation. The water of Rome is a valuable asset, distributed through 5,600 km of pipes and regularly analysed, by the Roman Water Company ACEA, to certify its quality.  

Friday 17 – Standing for Abruzzo

Friday 17, not always bad!The April 17th has been the day os solidarity for the earthquake’s victims of Abruzzo, with the voices of singers from “Sanremo Giovani”, who went on stage goes all’Alpheus in Rome, in Via del Commercio is planning the “Standing for Abruzzo, with the heart and the music.”Epicentro terremoto - L’Aquila The event, sponsored by the MUnicipality of Rome, is organized by VERTICAL Onlus (Italian Foundation for the cure of paralysis), FIDIA Onlus (Italian Federation of Disability) in collaboration with FIABA Onlus (Italian Fund Elimination of Architectural Barriers) and ANTHAI Onlus (Association Protecting and Italian Handicap Invalids).Over the intent of the organizers, an opportunity to offer full support and assist the people affected by the earthquake in the night between 5 and April 6.
Invito AlpheusThrough a contribution of 12 euro has been assured, in addition to participation in the concert music, including the ability to receive a free double DVD Speaking of the Bible, Old and New Testaments.
To enliven the evening, by Angelo Martini, were the youngs of Sanremo Giovani: Mauro Di Maggio, Francesco Arpino, Chiazzetta, Dr. Fra, Marco Candigliota, Mary Patrick, Luke Bussoleti, G & G, Michele Amadori, Virginia Splendore.Locale AlpheusThe world of music always comes down to testify in his own closeness to those who no longer has a house, who has lost everything he had, who saw their lives shattered in an instant.

Save money at Roma’s Outlets

posted by admin in Curiosity, General, Have fun

What is the best way to save the money?
Outlets! It seems given the rising number of customers who go there, to find the best price.
Here there are discounts during the whole year and outlets could be a good alternative to shopping centers, although a bit far from home.

Outlet Roma

Usually the bigger outlets grows outside the city walls, but since the period of economic crisis, people prefer to travel by car over the road and focus on actual savings.
Thsi shopping places offer garments, footwear and accessories discounted at 30-40% and during the end of season sales you can easily reach 70% or more.
This trend comes at great discount directly from English countries.The Web plays an important role in the hunt for discounted product and this time the trend comes from France, where for years there are sites that recover the practice of selling post.Near Rome there are two wide outlet, where the search of the discount and the head at the price of the occasion is something easily available.
Specifically these are Valmontone and Castel Romano.

Outlet Castel Romano

There is no choice, you can find great brands from Dolce and Gabbana to Pinko, from Diesel to Eredi Pisano, in short, these vast open spaces don’t allows you to escape without even having made a purchase.Some significant data may help to understand the reality of this great area:
Valmontone, opened in 2003, is composed of over 300 stores in an area of 100,000 mqs involving other 200 companies of fashion and even the furniture, the bedding and accessories for the kitchen.

Outlet Valmontone

Castel Romano consists of only 110 stores of exclusives brands including Valentino. Built with an architectural style reminiscent of imperial Rome, Castel Romano Designer Outlet is located only 25 km from the center of Rome. 25,000 square feet of pure shopping.
A large free parking with over 2,000 parking spaces, bars, restaurants, ATMs, a great playing area for children.
A true temple of shopping in the Pontine heart.
Not far from the Tyrrhenian coast, during the summer is pleasant destination for a day of sun and sea.
A location easily accessible by even an hour from the other provinces of Lazio.

Outlet Castel Romano

This relaxing oasis of shopping can satisfy every need, making it easier to purchase.

So enjoy it!

International Tennis’ championship of Italy

For lovers of Tennis, in these days the International Tennis 2009 will be presented at Stadio Olimpico of Rome.
Like every year, the competition, scheduled from April 25 to May , will have around 60 among the best players in the world.

Rafael Nadal

The 79th edition of the “Internazionali BNL di Tennis d’Italia” will share all the major stars of world ranking.
This year the premium for the winner is: 2,750,000 euros, for the men and 2,000,000 U.S. dollars for women.
At the championship, so with a total prize fund of over 4 million of Euros , organizers have to overcome the public record established last year: 162 thousand paying spectators.
For the occasion, the capacity of the central field was increased to 9500 seats.

The test male will start April 25th, the female one, on May 3rd.
The two main innovations in the bill are Big Sunday of May 3rd (when both the male and female round) and the anticipation of the women’s final on Saturday May 9th.
The decisive stages of both tournaments will again be broadcast live by Italia 1 channel, which for five years, has been the broadcaster of “Internazionali BNL d’Italia”.
SKY Sport will send all sessions of the game of the championship.

Pallina Tennis The International is also a way to spend a pleasant evening in an open space, in fact the area has a restaurant / bar just near the tennis courts, whose view is definitely breathtaking: at a glance you can see the cupolas of the most beautiful basilicas in Rome, the roofs of the houses and the cathedral in its many architectural styles.
During this event, it becomes an enchanting place for meeting for each age group.
Flavia PennettaIn conclusion, for those who believe that Italians are dedicated exclusively to the game of football, will be glad to know that are 5 Italians among these tennis players.Well … not only a nation of writers, surfers, poets, but also sports lovers.

Museums in Rome

  Rome has been preparing for so long for “The Saturday of the museum” a series of thumbnails that every Saturday, from April 4 until May 2, include the opening of some museums together with exhibitions of theater, music, and gastronomy.
Rome offers to its visitors new ideas to live the city during the day and night.
The initiative represents a clear choice of the Municipality of Rome to exploit the museums of the city, including venues and aggregation for the Romans, who in normal times can not enjoy the wonders of their beautiful Eternal City.
For this occasion, the Museum of the Capital will launch a series of animated opening night by large cultural events, thus proposing the museum not only as an exhibition space but also as a place for evening entertainment.
The 13th Of April, the day of “Pasquetta” has been full of theater: the 21 and 22.30, at the Museo Nazionale Romano di Palazzo Altemps, on stage “Il mondo della luna”, journey through the drama giocoso di Carlo Goldoni, music by Franz Joseph Haydn, constructed by mixing Ludovico Ariosto to Italo Calvino.

Palazzo Attemps

At Musei Capitonili , however, at 21 Gabriele Lavia suggested readings on “philosopher Marcus: between reason and reasons of state.”
The Gambero Rosso will delight the palates of the Roman Saturday 18 (19.30 and 21) to the Central Montamartini, with Italian wines, in a frame of industrial archeology.
The music player will be April 25: at the Museo di Roma in Palazzo Braschi will perform the string trio Ludwig, music by Beethoven and a transcript of the “Hungarian Dance” by Brahms.
At Museo Nazionale Romano (at Terme di Diocleziano) , however, the quintet of Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia will propose a repertoire of waltzes, marches and polkas of the Strauss family, but also jazz songs (21.15 and 22.30).Palazzo BraschiThe event will end with a concert on May 2 to the Markets of Trajan, where the pianist Danilo Rea will perform in “Piano Solo”, while at the Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna, the Trio will perform John Amato.
Admission to all performances is 5 euro, until the places available.
Rome has recently developed several cultural activities to promote and enhance its wonders.

Now, there wion’t be more excuses for discovering Rome. People: let’s go!


Some curious place names in Rome – Part 2

We continue the journey to discover the Roman names, with the vast repertoire of stories, myths, anecdotes and secrets that rest in those names. Much history of the city is also contained in the names of many churches. Piazza della Pace (a few steps from Piazza Navona), for example, is a small square, almost hidden, which owes its name to an important moment in the history of Italy. Around 1480, here was a church dedicated to St. Andrew, which had outside an image of Maria. During an evening outdoors, finished in brawl, a stone struck the face of Mary that began to bleed. Pope Sixtus IV went in procession to the place of wonder and interpreted it as a warning against wars that rend Italy after the Pazzi conspiracy in Florence. The pope wanted in the place was built a temple dedicated to Madonna della Pace, like a votic to invoke Mary to avoid another tear in the peninsula.

Piazza della Pace

 Another curious case is about Piazza della Quercia (behind Piazza Farnese), the origin of whose name is still doubtful. The most credited is that which tells of a church, entrusted in 1532 to the powerful corporation of butchers Romans. As it is tradition, workers belonging to the same category were for the most part from the same locality, in this case, from Viterbo and its countryside. The church, which was originally dedicated to San Nicolò di Capodiferro, became Santa Maria della Quercia also to honor the Virgin in Rome in the omonyme venerated shrine of Viterbo, where is holded the miraculous image painted on a fragment of tile, found near a oak.

Piazza della Quercia

Cats of Rome

When someone speaks of Rome, usually thinks about the main attractions of the Eternal City, of several monuments reminding centuries of history, of all museums that satisfied the curiosity of tourists from a lot parts of the world, telling also stories of famous people and not only …

However, not all of them, find that in every corner of the city, there are hundreds or perhaps thousands of lucky witnesses, the most common of everyday life: the cats of Rome!
Beautiful cats of every breed and size, multicolored or with a single color, of a neighborhood or of a private person.
Small and sweet animals, camouflaged among the cars in the parking areas, between the loops of all places, on benches in parks or in the middle of traffic, and which often give color and grace of the infinite beauty of the capital.

Gatto al Colosseo
They are so involved in the capital life, that now in all stores where tourists usually go, it is impossible that miss the classic card with a cat at the foot of a historical statue or, tired in the warmer months, it quenches the Trevi Fountain or Fontana Barcaccia (wonderful work of Bernini) located at Piazza di Spagna.

Famosa Cartolina
The protagonist of the Roman landscape, the feline population is increasing, so that we reach even more than 300 colonies with different locations.

There are also the so-called “gattare”, the old women that deal with these animals, cuddle them and spend a lot of time as well as give them something to eat and often take care of their health and cleanliness.
However has to be noted that not always they are old people. Lately I have more and more frequently to seen children and families who care even though it is often difficult to take pets inside their homes.

Often there are even entire blocks that “adopt” as a mascot these beautiful animals.

Gatto di Roma

We hope this habit takes more and more foot in the city life, do not have pets at home to care for and love them equally.

Via dei Condotti

posted by admin in Curiosity, General, Have fun

Via dei Condotti

Considered in the sixties the meeting point for the most popular of the Dolce Vita, now the famous Via dei Condotti was described by Vogue magazine the 5th Street most prestigious into the world of the luxury shopping.
For the lovers of fashion and beauty the greatest signatures, leather goods and jewelry must have a boutique in this wonderful street, a showcase that can enhance the prestige and status. On a long avenue of luxury, offering sumptuous extreme every kind of product dedicated to a target of Elite: here you can also find shoes from 2000 EURO each.
Special and unique in these stores you can also find items whose manufacture is reserved for the chosen few as made in limited numbers.
Those few meters, which make up this avenue are outlined on the one hand from the splendid Piazza di Spagna, which highlights the beauty and amplifies the surreal atmosphere and on the headquarters of Fendi sisters.
You can found greats brands like Louis Vuitton, Luisa Spagnoli, Hermes, Bulgari, Damiani, Prada, Christian Dior and many many more.

Negozio a Via dei Condotti

In the period of balances these stores are forced to set up barriers and security people to adjust the flow of potential buyers or just curious people who go to these structures in order to gain a designer piece at a price of occasion. Without doubt in this place appear to prevail upon an extreme look that only the branded product has to offer, and as in every age a chance to show can be an added value to ego.

Via dei Condotti
The spectacular productions produced by these shops to decorate their windows, may be think to be in an other world. For lovers of luxury, beauty, the splendor is impossible not to walk in Via dei Condotti, once arrived in Rome. Among the many shops, located one after the other, you can also find the famous Greek Cafe become known over the years and considered one of the most refreshment “inn” of the Capital. In addition to historical, coffee is famous for its many famous visitors had over the years has been for a long time, and partly still is, a meeting place for intellectuals. It meets once a month, the group of Roman scholars and academic experts in particular of the city of Rome.

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