You are here:
Go to our main publications page * Go to main page: * Get PDF

Chrystina Häuber

Horti of Maecenas: the ancient structures and buildings within their area (catalogue nos. 1-58) that are visible on the here published maps, some remarks on the maps, on the database and on the bibliography

(München, November 30th, 2011, Online at:

Text 2

The Horti of Maecenas: the ancient structures and buildings within their area (catalogue nos. 1-58) that are visible on the here published maps, some remarks on the maps, on the database and on the bibliography)

(see also Text 1

The Horti of Maecenas on the Esquiline Hill in Rome)


and Text 3

Explanations for the maps)


cf. for the Maps 1-10 mentioned in this text.

While drawing the phase maps of the Horti of Maecenas1 (Maps 3-6) in the ongoing research project "Die Horti des Maecenas auf dem Esquilin in Rom - eine diachrone Topographie",`The Horti of Maecenas on the Esquiline in Rome - a diachronic topography'2, I decided to catalogue the relevant ancient structures and buildings so far known in this area. The catalogue comprises also the Heroon of King Servius Tullius in the Lucus Fagutalis, the sacred grove of Iuppiter Fagutalis on the hilltop named `Fagutal' (Maps 3; 6, labels: 49 LUCUS FAGUTALIS; HEROON SERVIUS TULLIUS3). Although the Heroon stood at the northwest boundary of these Horti, it is discussed here together with them, because the (main) Domus of Maecenas in his Horti stood likewise on the Fagutal (Maps 3; 6, labels: FAGUTAL; 51 I.-X. DOMUS: MAECENAS). In the controversy concerning the Fagutal, which scholars either locate near the church of S. Pietro in Vincoli4 (cf. Map 1, labels: site of DOMUS: SERVIUS TULLIUS; S. Pietro in Vincoli), or at various sites in the eastern part of the Mons Oppius, I side with Domenico Palombi5 and Filippo Coarelli6, who are of the latter opinion, and have found further evidence to support my own hypothesis to assume it at the highest point in the area7. Also the locations of the Mons Oppius, the Velia and the Carinae are controversial. Here again, I follow Coarelli8, whose location of the Carinae is certain, because of the previously neglected toponym of the former Cappella di S. Maria in Carinis (Map 1, labels: VELIA; CARINAE; site of S. Maria in Carinis; MONS OPPIUS).

The modern `Esquiline' differs from the ancient Esquiliae9, which comprised the Mons Cispius and the Mons Oppius (the Fagutal was part of the latter). The toponym Esquiliae, being applied to an ever

1 OCD3 (1996) 907-908, s. v. Maecenas, Gaius (J. GLUCKER).
2 the results of this research project are summarized in C. HÄUBER forthcoming.
3 cf. for those identifications, F. COARELLI, "Argei, Sacraria: Regio II - Esquilina, 1.", in: LTUR I (1993) 123; id. 2001b; C. HÄUBER and F. X. SCHÜTZ 2004, 110-113; C. HÄUBER forthcoming.
4 cf. most recently, A. CARANDINI, D. BRUNO and F. FRAIOLI 2011, fig. 1, label: Fagutal, and passim.
5 D. PALOMBI 1997; cf. for a detailed discussion, C. HÄUBER forthcoming.
6 F. COARELLI 2001b.
7 C. HÄUBER and F. X. SCHÜTZ 2004, 64,76, 98, 105, 113; C. HÄUBER forthcoming.
8 F. COARELLI 2001b, passim, fig. 7; followed by C. HÄUBER 2005, 43 with n. 290, fig. 1, labels: site of S. Maria in Carinis; CARINAE (both with references).
9 cf. on the Esquiliae, A. GRÜNER 1993, 39-40; C. BUZZETTI, "Esquiliae (dall'eta arcaica all'eta imperiale)", in: LTUR II (1995) 234-235; cf. V (1999) 256; VI (2000) 53 s. v. Esquiliae. In the main map by L. HASELBERGER et al. 2002 (= id. 2008), the lettering "ESQUILIAE" is placed exactly, where "FIGLINAE" appears in my map 6 (scil. partly inside, and partly outside the Servian city Wall); cf. A. G. THEIN 2002, 119-120 (= id. 2008, 119-120).


growing area, is difficult to map, which is why I refrain from trying it. Besides, a lettering `Esquiliae', encompassing the entire area of the Mons Oppius (including the Fagutal) and the Mons Cispius (cf. here Map 1, labels: MONS OPPIUS; FAGUTAL; MONS CISPIUS) would cover many of the buildings which I intend to show on my maps. Horace was for example buried extremis Esquiliis, next to the Tumulus of Maecenas (Suet., Fragm., p. 298), which, in case the `Casa Tonda' has correctly been identified with the tomb of Maecenas10, would mean that at that time the Esquiline had `reached' the eastern part of the current Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II (maps 3; 6, labels: Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II; 10 "Casa Tonda"/ TUMULUS: MAECENAS). In order to avoid misunderstandings, I decided not to indicate both toponyms on my maps, but only the modern one, written in English (Map 1, label: ESQUILINE). Note that not only all the ancient names, but also some modern names are written with capital letters on my maps, for example the modern names of the gates in the Aurelianic Walls (cf. Map 1, labels: Aurelianic Walls; Augustan Arch/ PORTA TIBURTINA/ PORTA S. LORENZO).

Three more features of my maps differ from those of other authors: 1.) I suggest that the area, which according to most scholars belonged to the Horti Lamiani, was part of the Horti of Maecenas instead11. This is indicated by the following lettering on my Maps 3; 4; 6: HORTI MAECENATIANI12 ("HORTI LAMIANI"). I had already earlier been of this opinion13, and have now provided more evidence, which relates to the bounderies of the Horti Maecenatiani14, 2.) the ancient road underneath modern Via Labicana dates already to the regal period, which was previously neglected by most scholars. Because of this and some other reasons, I re-locate the Porta Querquetulana in the Servian city Wall on that road15, immediately to the west of the former old church of SS. Pietro e Marcellino16 (Maps 1-6; 9, labels: modern Via Labicana; Servian city Wall; PORTA QUERQUETULANA; SS. Pietro e Marcellino; the old church of SS. Pietro Marcellino is the red area to the west of the modern church), 3.) I reconstruct also the further course of the Servian city Wall to the south differently from all other recent scholars. The reason for that is my tentative re-location of the Porta Caelimontana on `Via Tusculana'/ Via dei SS. Quattro Coronati17 at the site of the former church of S. Maria Imperatrice18 (Map 1, labels: "VIA TUSCULANA"/ Via dei SS. Quattro Coronati; Servian city Wall; PORTA CAELIMONTANA?/ S. Maria Imperatrice). According to this hypothesis, the Porta Caelimontana in the Servian city Wall and the Campus Caelemontanus were immediately adjacent19. Scholars agree that `Campus Caelemontanus' and `Campus Martialis' on the Caelian were synonyms20. The identification of the Campus Martialis with the current Piazza di S. Giovanni in Laterano is certain, because of the toponym of the former Oratorio di S.

10 cf. here Text 1.
11 cf. for a summary of this controversy, here Text 1.
12 the Horti of Maecenas are called `Horti Maecenatis' and `Horti Maecenatiani' in the ancient literary sources; cf. A. G. THEIN 2002, 145 (= id. 2008, 145).
13 summarized in C. HÄUBER, "Horti Maecenatis", in: LTUR III (1996) 70-74, figs. 42-43, contra: M. CIMA DI PUOLO, "Horti Lamiani (2)", in: LTUR III (1996) 61-64, fig. 35.
14 cf. here Text 1; C. HÄUBER forthcoming.
15 which was the opinion of many scholars until the 19th century; cf. C. HÄUBER and F. X. SCHÜTZ 2004, 95 with ns. 118, 119.
16 C. HÄUBER and F. X. SCHÜTZ 2004, 93-95, 97-99; C. HÄUBER 2005, 16 with ns. 33, 35, figs. 1; 1(a); C.HÄUBER and F. X. SCHÜTZ 2010, 85 with ns. 19-28; here Text 1.
17 so already (but with different arguments), G. SÄFLUND 1932, 201-202; cf. pp. 140-141; see for the literary sources related to the Porta Caelimontana: p. 220 no. 98 pp. 224-225 nos. 171-173 (no. 173 = Cicero, Pis. 25, 61); cf. for a detailed discussion of the related problems, C. HÄUBER forthcoming.
18 C. HÄUBER and F. X. SCHÜTZ 2004, 99-100, fig. II.16; C. HÄUBER 2005, 16 with ns. 36, 37, fig. 1.
19 C. HÄUBER 2005, 15, fig. 1; C. HÄUBER forthcoming.
20 C. HÄUBER 2005, 15, fig. 1; C. HÄUBER forthcoming.


Gregorio in Martio21, which stood to the west of the church of S. Giovanni in Laterano, and to the southwest of its adjacent baptistery (Maps 1; 3-6, labels: CAMPUS CAELEMONTANUS (MARTIALIS); Piazza di S. Giovanni in Laterano; S. Giovanni in Laterano; Baptistery; site of S. Gregorio in Martio). The current location of the Porta Caelimontana at the site of the Arcus Dolabellae et Silani 22proves, therefore, to be wrong (Map 1, labels: Servian city Wall; PORTA CAELIMONTANA?/ ARCUS DOLABELLAE ET SILANI).

My catalogue of ancient structures and buildings in the Horti Maecenatiani comprises 58 entries, but instead of starting at the top left corner of those Horti with no. 1, and ending at the bottom right corner with n. 58, I follow the numbering of previous publications: nos. 1-24 are the structures and buildings so named by Maddalena Cima in the exhibition catalogue on the Horti Lamiani23, the nos. 25-29 are the items so named in my earlier topographical study24, the nos. 30-58 are new. Some of these structures and buildings are marked in addition to this with the letters A-O (the letter "K" is missing), these are the finds that occurred in the excavation of 2002 at the Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II, and were named like this by the excavators25. Some of the structures and buildings nos. 1-58 are additionally marked with the index numbers of the `Catasto Pio-Gregoriano' (drawn 1819-182426; published 1866), these are the nos. 318-358. This index comprises useful information concerning the owners and functions of those structures and buildings. Some of the latter appear already on Giambattista Nolli's Nuova Pianta di Roma (>pianta grande<; drawn 1736-174427, published 1748), where they are drawn `dark'28 (scil. ancient), and in most cases not labelled. Those, which had stood within the former Villa and Vigne Palombara (Maps 6; 10, labels: Villa Palombara; Vigne Palombara), were described in detail when that Villa was expropriated (1872-1873). The relevant descriptions not only corroborate Nolli's assertion that they had been ancient29, but provide also data which may be used in order to reconstruct the landscape of this area as it was like in the late 19th century.

Some of the catalogue numbers of the 58 ancient structures and buildings that appear on my maps of the Horti of Maecenas are subdivided, for example no. 51 I.-X., the (main) Domus of Maecenas within his

21 C. HÄUBER 2005, 14-15 with n. 29 (with references), fig. 1; C. HÄUBER forthcoming.
22 so F. COARELLI, ">Murus Servii Tullii<; Mura Repubblicane: Porta Caelimontana", in: LTUR III (1996) 324; Z. MARI, "Arcus Dolabellae et Silani", in: LTUR I (1993) 91-92.
23 cf. M. CIMA 1986, 53-58, Pianta 2.
24 cf. R. C. HÄUBER 1990b, 75-80, figs. 57, 58, 59, 64, Karte 1.
25 M. BARBERA et al. 2005.
26 so G. CARUSO and R. VOLPE 1992, caption of fig. 16; cf. R. C. HÄUBER 1990b, 12 ns. 2, 206 fig. 34, 1-4; Karte 2 (Roma, Archivio di Stato, ASR Presidenza generale del censo cadasto Urbano Brogliardo originale del Rione Monti no. 2736, with list of owners, copied from the index accompanying the original drawing for the `Catasto Pio- Gregoriano'); cf. for the printed version of this cadastral map (1866): A. P. FRUTAZ 1962 III, Tav. 524, 528, 529 (the area discussed here). I thank Dott.ssa Susanna Le Pera (cf. http://www.rom.geographie.uni- ) for discussing this point with me on March 27th, 2009 in Rome, and for alerting me to the fact that the `Catasto Pio-Gregoriano' is now provided in digital form by the project "Nuova Forma Urbis Romae"; cf. .
27 C. ANGELELLI 2000, 310 with n. 69; cf. A. P. FRUTAZ 1962 III, XX, at pianta CLXVII, 10, pl. 393.
28 cf. the caption of Nolli's map: A. P. FRUTAZ 1962 III, pl. 418; F. EHRLE 1932, 35: "Avvertimento: Le Fabriche moderne sono indicate da' tratti meno profondi, e meno oscuri. I tratti piu profondi, e piu oscuri indicano le fabriche antiche, che restano ancora in piedi"; C. HÄUBER and F. X. SCHÜTZ 2004, 63 with n. 9. I thank the late Prof. Lucos Cozza (Rome), who many years ago had alerted me to this fact.
29 cf. L. CARDILLI-ALLOISI 1983, 256 with n. 9; R. C. HÄUBER 1990b, 73 with n. 214 (with a summary of the relevant document); cf. p. 96 with n. 315; further on the former Villa Palombara, N. CARDANO 1990, passim; E. TALAMO 2008a, 57 with fig. 15.


Horti (cf. Maps 3; 6). I have chosen this further differentiation in those cases, when parts of what seems to have been the same building, are documented by different sources. Apart from discussing those maps in great detail in the accompanying study30, I publish them also on this Web-Server, together with a database. The database (cf. < contains the names of all the buildings and topographical features that appear in those maps, as well as references to the marked ancient features. In order to allow the orientation on site and to show at the same time, where the archaeological finds of earlier centuries have occurred, my diachronic maps comprise also many post-antique features (inter alia streets, churches and convents, which do not exist any more) that are documented on Nolli's map (1748). In addition, those maps contain also the current street names and many other current features, but contrary to the ancient ones, the database does not contain explanations concerning their names.

I have integrated those post-antique features into my maps, because all reports on archaeological finds since the Middle Ages are keyed to the contemporary layout of the city. Please note that my intention is not to integrate all post-antique toponyms into my diachronic maps, I have rather tried to integrate those, which are mentioned in the scholarly debate known to me that relates to the topography of this area, and in addition to this those toponyms, where the archaeological finds discussed in the accompanying study31 had occurred.

The database (< contains also the Bibliography, which is the basis of the accompanying study32 and of the here published maps. This study is focussed on the topography of the Horti of Maecenas and to their immediate surroundings, in addition to this many of the archaeological finds33 from this area are discussed in their topographical and historical contexts. Therefore, the bibliography (<>) contains references to both subjects.

Concerning this point, I should like to mention a fundamental problem here. No database can substitute one's own studies, provided one wants to understand a subject in depth. The information, contained in this particular one, as in any other database, does for example not contain overall judgements, which could help the `newcomer' to fully appreciate the collected material. A statement of the kind I am thinking of could be for example: the Horti of Maecenas are unique (when compared to the other Horti at Rome), both, what the number of the ancient buildings, and what the number of the archaeological finds from this area are concerned. I believe, the Horti of Maecenas are indeed unique in both respects, when compared to the other Horti, and in my opinion there are five interconnected reasons for that:

1.) In March of 537 AD34, Vitigis' Goths destroyed some35 of the aqueducts of Rome, which had allowed people like C. Maecenas to build Horti on the Esquiline, 2.) in the 16th century the Popes Gregory XIII

30 cf. C. HÄUBER forthcoming.
31 cf. C. HÄUBER forthcoming.
32 cf. C. HÄUBER forthcoming.
33 many more finds have come to light within the area of the former Horti of Maecenas than are discussed in C. HÄUBER forthcoming; cf. for the most complete documentation of those finds, R. C. HÄUBER 1991, but in this earlier publication they were not discussed in their topographical and historical contexts.
34 T. P. WISEMAN 1992, 77; S. BENEDETTI 1992, passim; R. COATES-STEPHENS 2003, 82.
35 but not all aqueducts were destroyed; cf. R. COATES-STEPHENS 2003, 82; Z. MARI, "Labicana Via", in: LTUR Suburbium III (2005) 128.


and Sixtus V revived this tradition by restoring an aqueduct (the Acqua Felice, 1583-1585)36, which is why the area of the former Horti Maecenatiani (maps 3; 6, label: HORTI MAECENATIANI ("HORTI LAMIANI")) was again used as vineyards (as before the destruction of the ancient aqueducts)37, and was not to be built over before the period `Roma Capitale' (scil. 1870-1911), 3.) at the conclave of Perugia (July 7th, 1304-June 5th, 1305!), the Frenchman Bertrand de Got was elected as Pope Clement V, who was crowned in Lyon on November 14th, 1305, and resided since 1309 in Avignon38. The following Popes stayed there as well. After Pope Gregory XI had returned from Avignon to Rome on January 17th, 137739, the - for the preservation of the ancient buildings within the area of the former Horti Maecenatiani - fortunate decision was made that the papal court would not reside at the Lateran any more (cf. Map 6, labels: S. Giovanni in Laterano; Scala Santa; Triclinio di Leone III40), as had been the case until 1305, but moved to the Vatican, 4.) another, in this respect fortunate fact was that on many Rome maps since the 16th century the Horti of Maecenas were (erroneously) located close to the Baths of Diocletian41 on the Quirinal in the Augustan Regio VI42, instead of at the Baths of Trajan on the Mons Oppius (Esquiline) in the Augustan Regio III43, as the pseudo-Acro scholion on Horace (Sat. 1,8,7)44 reports. The reason for this wrong location of the Horti of Maecenas was the bad preservation of the Baths of Trajan, which prevented their identification for a long time45, 5.) Emilio Rodriguez Almeida46 has started in 1970-71 a still ongoing `wave of publications', concentrating on the area of the Horti Maecenatiani and their immediate

36 T. P. WISEMAN 1998a, 16-17 with n. 24 (with references). R. COATES-STEPHENS 2003, 81-82, fig. 1, who discusses Sixtus's inscription at the Porta Furba (southeast of Rome), relating to his Acqua Felice, can demonstrate that this proud statement was not entirely true. It reads in translation: `Pope Sixtus V ordered that water should be looked for everywhere, in order that when the springs had been restored the hills of the deserted city should be inhabited again. In the year 1585, the first year of his papacy'; cf. Z. MARI, "Aqua Claudia", in: LTUR I (1993) 64 (on the fact that the Aqua Claudia and the Aqua Marcia were partly restored for the purpose); cf. S. BENEDETTI 1992, passim (on the whole course of the Acqua Felice).
37 cf. C. HÄUBER forthcoming.
38 cf. Lexikon für Theologie und Kirche Bd. 2, 3 (Freiburg u. a. 1994) Sp. 1221 s. v. Clemens V. (A. KIESEWETTER). A thank Dr. E. P. Wipfler (Zentralinstitut für Kunstgeschichte, München) for kindly discussing this point with me on November 4th, 2011; cf. J. GRANIER and S. GAGNIERE 2004, 6-7; cf. further on Clement V, S. MENACHE 1998.
39 cf. F. BURANELLI 2006, 37-38, at cat. no. 19 "Laurent Pecheux (Lione 1729-Torino 1821) S. Caterina da Siena guida il papa Gregorio XI nel suo ritorno da Avignone a Roma", painting (F. LEMME); cf. p. 8.
40 As in the case of all other still standing buildings in Rome, I have drawn the ground-plans of those three buildings after the photogrammetric data of the Comune di Roma (now: Roma Capitale). The private chapel of the Popes called "S. Lorenzo ad Sancta Sanctorum" on the first floor of the building called "Scala Santa", and the "Triclinio Leonino", an apse, decorated with a mosaic of the "sala da pranzo", are what is left of the "Patriarchio", the Papal Palace built by Pope Leo III at the end of the 8th century; cf. TCI-guide Roma 1999, 287-292.
41 cf. Etienne Duperac's map of Rome (1577, labels: THERMAE DEOCLITIANAE; Turris Maecenatis). For a detailed discussion of this fact, L. CIANFRIGLIA 1976/ 1977, 31-47; A. M. COLINI 1979, 239 with n. 2, fig. 1.
42 cf. D. CANDILIO, "Thermae Diocletiani", in: LTUR V (1999) 53-59, figs. IV, 84; 34-37, 89; cf. p. 58, "Thermae Diocletiani (in fonti agiografiche)" (G. DE SPIRITO).
43 cf. G. CARUSO and R. VOLPE, "Thermae Traiani", in: LTUR V (1999) 67-69, figs. I,153; II, 18, 20; III, 42, 131, 221; IV, 84; 42, 43.
44 cf. R. C. HÄUBER 1990b, 101, n. 350.
45 cf. G. CARUSO and R. VOLPE, "Thermae Traiani", in: LTUR V (1999) 67: "... le strutture monumentali [of the Baths of Trajan], delle quali nel tempo [scil. in the post-antique period] si perse l'originaria attribuzione. Nel XVI sec. infatti le rovine del Colle Oppio venivano comunemente chiamate >Terme di Tito<".
46 cf. E. RODRIGUEZ ALMEIDA 1970-71 (cf. for the great importance of the findings, published in this article, F. COARELLI 2001b, 7 with n. 1, fig. 1); cf. , for this here so called `wave of publications'.


surroundings, which had the effect that many new architectural finds were discovered and identified in this area, and many new archaeological finds have been attributed to it.

As happens so often in Rome, also in this case the modern toponymy follows the scholarly debate concerning the ancient topography of the city: see the location of the road called "Via degli Orti di Mecenate" within the area of the Baths of Trajan on the Oppian. A photograph47, taken on site and showing this street name was, therefore, chosen as illustration of the first page of this presentation (cf. Map 6, labels: Baths of Trajan; Via degli Orti di Mecenate; HORTI MAECENATIANI).

Chrystina Häuber, November 30th, 2011.

47taken by Franz Xaver Schütz on May 26th, 2004.