Temple of Peace, Rome

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Coin of Emperor Vespasian
Wall of the Temple of Peace where the Forma Urbis was mounted

The Temple of Peace, also known as the Forum of Vespasian or Templum Pacis, was built in Rome in 71 AD under Emperor Vespasian. It faces the Velian Hill, toward the famous Colosseum, and was on the southeast side of the Argiletum. Statius claims that Emperor Domitian was largely responsible for the completion of the temple, not Vespasian- this issue remains controversial within the archaeological world today.[1] The Temple of Peace is part of the Imperial Fora which is “a series of monumental fora (public squares), constructed in Rome over a period of one and a half centuries” (Wikipedia contributors. "Imperial fora." Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia).[2] It is not officially considered a forum because there is no evidence of it serving a political function, therefore it is called a temple.[2] The funds to create this grand monument were acquired through Vespasian’s sacking of Jerusalem during the Jewish-Roman Wars. The interior and surrounding buildings were decorated with the treasures collected there by the Roman army.[3] Because Vespasian was both a leading general and later appointed emperor during the first war, the Temple of Peace was especially important to him as a leader. A grand and significant monument such as this is vital to the promotion of a powerful, strong public image of the emperor, and is a symbol of the peace and prosperity Vespasian was able to bring the empire.

Structure of the Temple[edit]

Although very little remains of the Temple of Peace are left in Rome today, we know much about its structure and layout thanks to the Forma Urbis, a large, detailed marble map of Rome and its buildings that was originally hung on a wall inside the temple in the 3rd century. The temple is made up of an apse that opens into a large portico. Columns separate the temple from the central unpaved, grassy area. This is different from the majority of other fora, which typically are paved. This area probably featured gardens, pools, statues, and other treasures acquired during the conquest of Jerusalem.[2]


  1. ^ Anderson, James C., Jr. (1982-01-01). "Domitian, the Argiletum and the Temple of Peace". American Journal of Archaeology 86 (1): 101–110. doi:10.2307/504296. 
  2. ^ a b c "Imperial fora". 
  3. ^ "Temple of Peace". archive1.village.virginia.edu. Retrieved 2015-11-10. 

Coordinates: 41°53′33″N 12°29′15″E / 41.8926°N 12.4876°E / 41.8926; 12.4876