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Arcus Pompei  (Arch of Pompeius)


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Mentioned by Magister Gregorius in the twelfth century. Its sculptures represented his triumph with a long train of waggons laden with spoils. Rushforth (JRS 1919, 40, 54-55) maintains that this arch had a real existence (cf. Petrarch, Ep. de reb. famil. 6.2, quoted also by Nibby, Roma Antica, ii. 616), but his opinion is not shared by Prof. Hulsen, who points out that the triumphal arch is a creation of the Augustan period (Festschrift fur Hirschfeld, 428).

[Platner, Samuel Ball, and Thomas Ashby. 1929 (rev. ed.). "Arcus Pompei." A Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome: 42-43.  London: Oxford University Press.]

Select Bibliography
La Rocca, E. 1987-88. "Pompeo Magno 'Novus Neptunus'."  Bullettino della Commissione Archeologica del Commune di Roma 92: 286.

Richardson, Jr. L. 1992. "Arcus Pompei."  A New Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome. Baltimore: John Hopkins University.

Rushforth, G. 1919. "Magister Gregorius' De Mirabilibus Urbis Romae: a new description of  Rome in the twelfth century," JRS 9: 14-58.   


A Note from Ulysses:   P-A were wrong to say that “the triumphal arch is a creation of the Augustan period.”  See, e.g., F. S. Kleiner (1995), ‘The Study of Roman Triumphal and Honorary Arches 50 Years After Kabler,” JRA 2:  196, who notes that complex triumphal arches are documented as early as 150 B.C.  In this case pedagogy has not kept afoot with current scholarship, for you will still find authors repeating this fallacy.

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Images of the Arcus Pompei


There are no known remains or visual reconstructions.
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