What's So Great About Rome?

Andrew Kranis

Sigmund Freud famously imagined Rome as a city of palimpsest – “a mental entity …in which nothing once constructed had perished, and all the earlier stages of development had survived alongside the latest.”  It is unique in the world in revealing all of those layers to the visitor simultaneously. Modern Rome has emerged from that stew of overlapping events, architectures and power structures as one of the most beautiful and resilient places in the world, even in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic. We explore the building of the Eternal City over two millennia, from antiquity and the classical period, through the ‘second Rome’ under the Popes, and culminating in Rome’s re-invention in the 19th and 20th centuries, stopping to observe the rich but fraught pre-existing context that has shaped it as a Contemporary European Capital. Our virtual walk through its streets and its history will remind you why Rome is defined by its palimpsest and will whet your appetite for your next visit.