Monday, October 08, 2012

Nero s rotating dining room

PEPLUM: Nero's rotating dining room

English: Portrait of Nero. Marble, Roman artwo...
English: Portrait of Nero. Marble, Roman artwork, 1st century CE. From the Augustan area on the Palatine Hill. Antiquarium of the Palatine, Inv. 618. Français : Portrait de Néron. Marbre, œuvre romaine, Ier siècle ap. J.-C. Provenance : zone de l'époque d'Auguste, Palatin. Antiquarium du Palatin, Inv. 618. Italiano: Ritratto di Nero. Marmo, opera romana del I sec. d.C. Dalla zona Augustea sul Palatino. Antiquario del Palatino, Inv. 618. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
"The purported main dining room, with a diameter of over 50 feet (16 meters), rested upon a 13-foot (4-meter) wide pillar and four spherical mechanisms that, likely powered by a constant flow of water, rotated the structure. The discovery was made during routine maintenance of the fragile Palatine area, officials said.

Latin biographer and historian Suetonius, who chronicled his times and wrote the biographies of 12 Roman rulers, refers to a main dining room that revolved "day and night, in time with the sky.""

Angelo Bottini, the state's top official for archaeology in Rome, said the ceiling of the rotating room might have been the one mentioned by Suetonius, who wrote of ivory panels sliding back and forth to shower flowers and perfumes on the guests below.

"The heart of every activity in ancient Rome was the banquet, together with some form of entertainment," Bottini said at the dig. "Nero was like the sun, and people were revolving around the emperor."