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Temple of Jupiter

APP’s Excavations and Research, Temple of Jupiter
Professor Enzo Lippolis (University of Rome ‘La Sapienza’)
APP Contact Person Giuseppe Scarpati

An exploration of the northern part of the Forum square was planned, not only to explain and better
identify the main construction and transformation phases of the Temple of Jupiter and any other related building, but also, and above all, to link the history of the Temple’s construction with the evolution and architectural development of public space between the mid and late Republican period.

About 10cm below the current walking surface, the excavations brought to light a stratigraphy similar to the one Maiuri had described in the 40s. Just above the level of the foundations, along the same axis of the Temple, the remains of a Roman concrete structure were found. It is still possible to see traces of the blocks and/or slabs, which have been removed in the meantime, that should originally have covered the exterior of the building. The internal part of the building is preserved at a slightly higher level than the exterior. As a result it can be supposed that the basement could have been at a higher level; however, it is not possible to determine the exact dimensions.

Below that construction, the remains of at least two or three storeys with tamped earth floors were found. Such storeys seemed to have been abandoned and replaced by the construction of the so-called altar, and a new embankment made of Roman concrete. This embankment with its perfectly smooth, regular Surface was probably destined to be the pavement for part of the Forum. This shows a constant and serious effort to adapt the new square pavement to principles of regularity and symmetry, which at present has not been revealed as evident in previous phases.