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“A Unique Collection” 5 of 5 stars
Review of National Roman Museum - Palazzo Massimo alle Terme

National Roman Museum - Palazzo Massimo alle Terme
Largo di Villa Peretti 67 | Museo Nazionale Romano, 00185 Rome, Italy (Castro Pretorio)
(+39) 06 480201
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Ranked #24 of 687 Attractions in Rome
Type: Art Museums, Specialty Museums, Museums
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Owner description: Built onto the ruins of the Domitian theater, this splendid palazzo houses beautiful mosaics and Roman statuary.
Florida
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
10 attraction reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
“A Unique Collection”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2013

There are wonderful sculptures throughout this main Rome museum. A large collection of Roman busts but also some rare classical bronzes and a very intact version of the discobolus.

Of great interest were some bronzes retrieved from an ancient ship, not a warship but an emperors pleasure boat. I believe the are the only artifacts ever found like these.

Most exciting for me was the top floor with it magnificent recreation of Roman interiors. Extensive and exquisite wall paintings, laid out on four walls to scale so you really feel you are in an imperial home. Many mosaics floors and walls as well. This is probably the greatest collection of Imperial wall paintings.

Visited March 2013
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Manchester
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
15 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
“Step into ancient Rome here”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 20, 2013

I am so glad that we visited this museum with its with its statues and frescoes from ancient Rome. Having read about it I was particularly keen to see the frescoes taken from the house of Livia, wife to Augustus, founder of the Roman empire and its first emporer. I was not certainly not disappointed. The paint on these walls is over 2,000 years old and yet the images of birds, trees and beautiful flowers still convey a sense of tranquillity and wonder. There are apparently 69 identifiable species of birds portrayed and 24 kinds of trees and shrubs as well as all kinds of beautiful flowers. The seasons all blend together as all the flowers are blooming at once and some of the trees are in fruit. If you want to find out more about this fresco then there is a really good video which really brings the paintings to life. Go to https://www.khanacademy.org/humanities/art-history/art-history-400-c-e--ancient-cultures-1/ancient-rome/v/painted-garden--villa-of-livia.

However, this museum contains much more than these frescoes. There are also whole rooms taken from another Augustan villa found near Trastavere. These are also rich in frescoes and, very unusually, feature parts of decorated ceiling plaster. There are also wonderful mosaic floors made of tiny tesserae.

The ground floor consists of statues from ancient Rome. There is also a fantastic sarcophagus intrically carved with scenes of battle. Although we didn't visit the lower ground floor, this contains a collection of rare coins.

Overall, I found this museum well worth visiting. It's on the piazza as you exit Termini station. We visited in March when there were no crowds. However, I understand that if there are large parties or many visitors then there are timed slots for the frescoes. Check out online before you go.

Museo Naxionale Romano (of which this is part) is spread over four different sites and if you buy a ticket for one then it gives entry into all four. Your ticket is valid for three days so don't destroy it.

Visited March 2013
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napoli
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Ancient Rome”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 18, 2013

This is an exceptional museum. Part of a group. You buy one ticket and get to see three museums. The best colllection of Roman and Roman copies of Greek statuary I've seen. Unlike most itlalian museums, everything is carefully explained and contextualized. Somethings even have special info for children. There's a permanent exhibition of chariot racers' busts carefully displayed against a black background under brilliant light to bring out the chiaroscuro of the marble. Downstairs is jewellery and numismatics that takes your right through the history of the whole civilization. As always, the staff are useless and just sit there gossiping and doing quizzes in "la settimana enigmistica". Something needs to be done about them...

Visited March 2013
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16 reviews 16 reviews
9 attraction reviews
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10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Start viewing from the top floor.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 17, 2013

There are ancient frescoes and mosaics on the 3rd floor, restoration rooms of the ancient villas. This is a unique restoration work, which transmits decor ancient buildings.

Visited March 2013
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Thatcham, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Great frescoes & mosaics”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 16, 2013

We agree with the other reviewers that this a very good museum. The top floor with the House of Livia Garden room frescoe and the other frescoes are beautiful and help you understand and bring to life what was inside the ruined stone building you walk around at other locations.

Visited March 2013
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