piranesi

mélange
beginning and end of Il Campo Marzio dell'Antica Roma

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Dedication to Robert Adam   Latin text

Dedication to Robert Adam   Italian text



A rendering of the sarcophagus of Maria appears within the Il Campo Marzio dell'Antica Roma publication as head-piece to the Latin dedication the publication to Robert Adam. This position makes the sarcophagus of Maria the third image within Il Campo Marzio after the title page and the frontispiece. Did Piranesi deliberately place ancient Rome's last imperial artifact at the very beginning of his documentation? Moreover, is it significant that the sarcophagus of Maria is the only ancient remain depicted within Il Campo Marzio that is Christian as opposed to Pagan?

Interestingly, a "sarcophagus of Egyptian porphyry found among the ruins of the baths of Agrippa, now the funerary urn for the ashes of Pope Clement XII [1730-40] in the Basilica of St. John Lateran" acts as head-piece to Il Campo Marzio's Italian dedication to Robert Adam.


Signs of ancient Rome's Pagan-Christian inversion.

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