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After spending some time we hopped on to the bus again and went on to see the other majestic structures , The Roman forum and Palatine Hill looking down onto the Circus Maximus which was a track for Chariot races during medieval times , the Pantheon . Since we were sleep deprived we thought of closing the day early and on the way back something caught our eye that we hadn't seen earlier , showed the consciousness of Europeans about family planning .
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Santa Maria in Montesanto
This is one of the twin churches in Piazza del Popolo along with Santa Maria Del Miracoli. Built in the 17th century, this church includes the handiwork of three great architects. Started by Carlo Rainaldi, continued by Gian Bernini and finally completed by Carlo Fontana. Literally meaning the Holy Mountain, this is also called as the Church of artists because of the weekly mass conducted here by artists. Referring to Mount Carmel in Israel it is dedicated to the Virgin Mary. The two structures are considered to be twin structures because they look similar, but if you look closely you will find this one to be much different than the Santa Maria of Miracoli.
Santa Cecilia in Trastevere
This 5th century church is dedicated to Cecilia, the patron saint of Music. The church is lined with beautiful frescoes and late Renaissance architecture. One of the major highlights inside is the sculpture of St. Cecilia by the late-Renaissance sculptor Stefano Maderno. This sculpture seeeks to emulate the dead body of the saint. It also includes Pietro Cavallini's beautiful fresco in the nun's choir. You can also visit the excavations of the ancient Roman homes that are underway nearby.
Santa Maria Sopra Minerva
Crossing the Tiber we reach the Santa Maria Sopra Minerva. This Church is one of the main churches for the Roman Catholics and is the only Gothic church in Rome. It was built over the ruins of the temple of Minerva, the Greco-Roman Goddess of Wisdom and is thus called the Church of Saint Mary over Minerva. There are Renaissance sculptures inside the church, including Michelangelo's Christ Bearing the Cross. There are also various Renaissance and post-Renaissance tombs here.
Trinita' dei Monti
We climb up the Spanish steps to meet this magnificent structure. This church is a later Renaissance structure and is dedicated to the Holy Trinity. This church was originally constructed to commemorate France's victory over Naples and was later re-constructed. It was built in the Gothic style, but the facade is neo-classical. It was raided of its richness during the Neapolitan Invasion.
Basilica Di Santa Prassede
Along with Castel Sant'Angelo, Basilica Di Santa Prassede has stood the testimony of time and a many economical and artistic changes that occurred from the 5th to the 14th century A.D., tracing Roman past from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance. Having been reestablished under Papal authority, it served as a saving grace and hidden space for many Popes and Cardinals through various tribunal and war times.
Temple of Hadrian
Built by Antoninus Pius, successor of Hadrian after whom the temple is named, Temple Of Hadrian was much once decorated with trophies and reliefs of the conquests (the relics now lie in a near by museum). Today only the 11 pillars at the north end remain. These pillars were integrated in the 17th century to make a new customs office. Today, there resides the Roman Stock Exchange within it. A superimposition of the modern on the ancient- that is pretty much what Temple of Hadrian is.
Temple of Hadrian
Although large sections of the site have yet to be uncovered (only an estimated 15% of the site has been excavated), it’s still possible for visitors to get a sense for how large and important this city would have once been. Even more, the ruins speak to the grandeur and splendor of the city in its former life; a grandeur that included mosaic covered streets, something that has not been seen elsewhere, as well as numerous temples, fountains, and monuments erected in honor of the city’s elite or to commemorate important Imperial visits.