Roman fortress of Empreor Augustus to be restored


An ancient fortress which was built to be the final resting place of Augustus, the first Emperor of Rome, will receive an £8.4 million ($10.9 million) makeover. 

Towering above Rome’s historic centre, the ancient mausoleum was once used as a military look-out point and hosted the lavish parties of the Roman dynasty.

Since the turn of the 20th century, the 2,000-year-old site was left to fall into decay, but it is now finally being restored.

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An ancient fortress which was built to be the final resting place of Augustus, the first Emperor of Rome, will receive a $10million (£8.4million) makeover. Pictured is its central sepulcher

An ancient fortress which was built to be the final resting place of Augustus, the first Emperor of Rome, will receive a $10million (£8.4million) makeover. Pictured is its central sepulcher

An ancient fortress which was built to be the final resting place of Augustus, the first Emperor of Rome, will receive a $10million (£8.4million) makeover. Pictured is its central sepulcher

THE MAUSOLEUM

  • Built in 28BC for Rome’s first emperor
  • In Rome’s historic centre 
  • The last resting place of the eponymous emperor, as well as his successors Nero and Tiberius
  • The structure is 90 metres (295 feet) in diameter and 45 metres (147 feet) high
  • It originally featured a bronze sculpture of Augustus on the roof
  • Over the centuries it was used as a fortress, for bullfights and for concerts 

The 10-million-euro ($10.9 million, £8.4 million) public-private facelift is expected to be completed in 2019.

The structure, located along the Tiber River, is made up of circular, vaulted corridors with the sepulcher in the centre.

It has been covered with trees, weeds and garbage and closed to the public since the 1970s because of safety concerns.

Its restoration is being financed by the city of Rome, the culture ministry and a six million-euro donation from the TIM phone company.

On Tuesday, Mayor Virginia Raggi donned a protective helmet and paid a visit.

‘I hope the mausoleum will be given back as soon as possible to the people,’ she said.

Towering above Rome's historic centre, the ancient mausoleum was once used a military look-out point and is the Roman ruler's last resting place 

Towering above Rome's historic centre, the ancient mausoleum was once used a military look-out point and is the Roman ruler's last resting place 

Towering above Rome’s historic centre, the ancient mausoleum was once used a military look-out point and is the Roman ruler’s last resting place 

Emperor Augustus had the mausoleum built in 28 BC for his bones and ashes and those of his dynasty. Emperors Vespasian, Nero and Tiberius are among  those buried 

Emperor Augustus had the mausoleum built in 28 BC for his bones and ashes and those of his dynasty. Emperors Vespasian, Nero and Tiberius are among  those buried 

Emperor Augustus had the mausoleum built in 28 BC for his bones and ashes and those of his dynasty. Emperors Vespasian, Nero and Tiberius are among  those buried 

EMPEROR AUGUSTUS: FOUNDER OF THE ROMAN EMPIRE 

A statue of Augustus in Rome's city centre

A statue of Augustus in Rome's city centre

A statue of Augustus in Rome’s city centre

Augustus was the founder of the Roman Empire and its first Emperor, ruling from 27 BC until his death in 14 AD.

Together with Mark Antony, and Marcus Lepidus, he formed the Second Triumvirate to defeat the assassins of Caesar.

Following their victory, they divided the Roman Republic among themselves and ruled as military dictators, before their individual ambitions tore the alliance appart.

Lepidus was driven into exile and stripped of his position, and Antony committed suicide following his defeat at the Battle of Actium by Octavian in 31 BC.

In response, Augustus placed governmental power with the Roman Senate and other legislative institutions, to establish constitutional framework called the Principate – the first phase of the Roman Empire – while secretly remaining in overall control as a military dictator.

The reign of Augustus initiated an era of relative peace known as the Pax Romana, or, The Roman Peace and he enlarged the empire too.

Augustus died at the age of 75, officially of natural causes, although there were rumours his wife Livia poisoned him.

A view of the Mausoleum which is finally being restored in a multi-million euro project set to be completed in 2019

A view of the Mausoleum which is finally being restored in a multi-million euro project set to be completed in 2019

A view of the Mausoleum which is finally being restored in a multi-million euro project set to be completed in 2019

Marble plaques mark the lives of members of the Roman dynasty. The Mausoleum is in the second phase of its archaeological restoration

Marble plaques mark the lives of members of the Roman dynasty. The Mausoleum is in the second phase of its archaeological restoration

Marble plaques mark the lives of members of the Roman dynasty. The Mausoleum is in the second phase of its archaeological restoration

Augustus had the mausoleum built for himself and the imperial family, and it also houses the bones and ashes of Emperors Vespasian, Nero and Tiberius, each indicated with a marble plaque.

The structure, originally 90 metres (295 feet) in diameter and 45 metres (147 feet) high, once featured a bronze sculpture of Augustus on the roof.

Its location, a stone’s throw from the Tiber, gave it maximum visibility around the city of Rome.

Over the centuries it was used as a fortress, for bullfights and for concerts.

Fascist dictator Benito Mussolini, eager to revive Roman imperial glory, restored the area and built a square piazza around it called Piazza Augusto Imperatore, which today houses upscale restaurants and shops.

The Mausoleum of Augustus is in Rome's historic centre close to the River Tiber and the Vatican City 

The Mausoleum of Augustus is in Rome's historic centre close to the River Tiber and the Vatican City 

The Mausoleum of Augustus is in Rome’s historic centre close to the River Tiber and the Vatican City 

Its location, a stone's throw from the Tiber, gave it maximum visibility around the city of Rome. Over the centuries it was used as a fortress, for bullfights and for concerts 

Its location, a stone's throw from the Tiber, gave it maximum visibility around the city of Rome. Over the centuries it was used as a fortress, for bullfights and for concerts 

Its location, a stone’s throw from the Tiber, gave it maximum visibility around the city of Rome. Over the centuries it was used as a fortress, for bullfights and for concerts 

The structure, located along the Tiber River, is made up of circular, vaulted corridors with the sepulcher in the centre 

The structure, located along the Tiber River, is made up of circular, vaulted corridors with the sepulcher in the centre 

The structure, located along the Tiber River, is made up of circular, vaulted corridors with the sepulcher in the centre 

The structure, originally 90 metres (295 feet) in diameter and 45 metres (147 feet) high, originally featured a bronze sculpture of Augustus on the roof.

The structure, originally 90 metres (295 feet) in diameter and 45 metres (147 feet) high, originally featured a bronze sculpture of Augustus on the roof.

The structure, originally 90 metres (295 feet) in diameter and 45 metres (147 feet) high, originally featured a bronze sculpture of Augustus on the roof.

But the mausoleum itself was shut down in the 1930s, fenced off and left in disrepair.

In the first phase of the restoration, workers cleaned out the garbage and cut back the trees and weeds that grew up inside. 

Phase two involves installing electricity and a cover.

The restored mausoleum will have an adjoining museum, elevators and a shop, making it a convenient stop alongside the nearby Ara Pacis altar which received a Richard Meier-designed protective covering a decade ago.

Augustus was 35 when he had the mausoleum built, shortly after his victory in the naval Battle of Actium, where he defeated the fleets of Antony and Cleopatra, consolidating his power and making him the undisputed leader of the Roman Empire.

Its restoration is being financed by the city of Rome, the culture ministry and a six million-euro donation from the TIM phone company 

Its restoration is being financed by the city of Rome, the culture ministry and a six million-euro donation from the TIM phone company 

Its restoration is being financed by the city of Rome, the culture ministry and a six million-euro donation from the TIM phone company 



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