Tempio di Saturno
Tempio di Saturno
4.5
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The area
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Neighborhood: Campitelli
How to get there
  • Fori Imperiali-Colosseo • 8 min walk
  • Colosseo • 8 min walk

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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles128 reviews
Excellent
60
Very good
58
Average
9
Poor
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0

Mairwen1
United Kingdom10,823 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2022
This is one of the best corners of the Roman forum. Don't miss this section of the forum. Here you have the Temple of Saturn, the Arch of Septimius Severus and the Temple of Vespasian & Titus alongside each other.
In ancient times, it was also the scene of one of the best Roman festivals, Saturnalia. A boozy mid-winter binge held on 17th of Dec, it lasted several days. People feasted, drank, gambled, exchanged gifts of wax figures and candles and generally partied. Animal sacrifices and a huge public feast were held at the temple, after which people spilt out onto the street, shouting, “Io Saturnalia!”.
In a topsy-turvy letting down of hair, slaves were given the same freedoms as ordinary citizens, masters sometimes served slaves during feasts and households named a younger or lower status person to be a kind of pretend king for the day, their job being to create mischief and fun during the festival period.
I’m glad we knew these stories before seeing the temple because it helped bring it alive.
It is easy to recognise the Temple of Saturn. It is a reasonably substantial ruin, bigger than many of the other forum ruins.
What you see here is eight majestic columns, standing on a pediment of travertine blocks which were recycled from earlier temples. Not all the columns match up because the temple was rebuilt a few times however the grey granite Ionic columns at the front are from Mons Claudianus, the Roman quarry in Egypt.
Above them, the architrave is also pretty much intact, with a frieze of acanthus leaves and palmettes on one side and an inscription on the other.
Originally an ivory statue of Saturn was held inside. Normally its feet were bound with woollen ropes but during the festival, these were cut or loosened to represent freedom. The temple also housed the public treasury (aerarium) and the bronze tablets on which Roman law was inscribed.
ENTRY: The temple can be clearly seen for free from outside the forum if you are walking past the Mamertine Prison to the Capitoline museums. From here, you look down over the temple.It is worth noting that you can no longer buy a separate ticket to the forum and instead you have to buy the combo Colosseum/Forum ticket which means that you need to book ahead.
Written June 25, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

dapper777
Monaco63,854 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2020
The large Ionic building, which stands at the foot of the Capitol, is certainly identifiable with the Temple of Saturn.
It is probably the oldest temple in the Roman Forum.
Eight Ionic columns remain of the temple, in gray granite, and the main pediment, attributable to the phase after 283 AD, largely built with recycled material.
The podium dates back to the reconstruction by Roman senator, consul Lucius Munatius Plancus and is built in concrete mixture, covered with travertine slabs.
The dedication day of the temple was December 17th and starting from this date the wild parties of the Saturnalia were celebrated for a few days (until December 23rd in the Domitian age).
This holiday, often combined in some aspects with modern Christmas and in others with Carnival, was characterized by sacrifices, large banquets and celebrations.
Very nice to see and admire especially at sunset
Written October 7, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Brad
Hong Kong, China173,427 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Family
The Temple of Saturn is one of the building ruins near end of Via Sacra in the northwest end of the Roman Forum. It is believed original construction of the temple which was dedicated to the god Saturn was around 497 BC. What you can see today is a row of columns that represent that last restoration of the temple around 360 AD. Notice that the columns don't match as some would have originated elsewhere and been repurposed for use at the Temple of Saturn in that day and age. The columns are topped with pediment stone and stand upon a platform of travertine blocks.

You can see the temple ruins quite well from up close when exploring the Roman Forum grounds. It also stands out and is easy to identify from higher vantage points when viewing the forum grounds from higher locations at Capitoline Hill and Palatine Hill.
Written June 4, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

MandC0218
Riverside, CA6,903 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2018 • Couples
This is the oldest temple ruin inside the Roman Forum, built around 400 BC. Only one side of the temple with its huge columns and detailed carvings remain, but absolutely worth a visit when you see the Roman Forum.
Written July 31, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

LoveHawaii13
Schaumburg, IL42 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2017 • Family
Saw the Roman Forum at night from Capitoline Hill. Awesome pics taken. Better to take pics from a hill than to walk through it. There is no narration. But looking at the forum from above gives some perspective.
Written June 9, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

The Spanish Steps Apartment
Rome, Italy32,581 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2016 • Couples
One of the Roman Forum's great temples, the remaining columns and pediment give you an idea of just how enormous and imposing this temple would have been. The temple was dedicated to the Roman god Saturn, and also held the empire's treasury. Beautiful to see, an iconic image of the magnificence that was once the Roman Empire.
Written October 3, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Brad
Hong Kong, China173,427 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2015 • Couples
The ancient Temple of Saturn is one of the more profound ancient structures in the Roman Forum. Originally built around 497 BC and dedicated to the mythical Sun God of early Rome. It seems the temple was rebuilt several times, the remaining ruins you can see today are likely from 43 BC, the last recorded reconstruction of the Temple of Saturn.

Today, you can see eight standing columns, topped by building fragments situated upon an elevated porch. It is a neat thing to see, one you will likely have seen many times in images of the Roman Forum in guidebooks on travel shows.

In this regard, the Temple of Saturn is one of the neat standing structures to find in the Roman Forum. It is located near the Column of Phocas and the remaining three columns of the ancient Temple of Vespasian and the end of Via Sacra.
Written May 16, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

FTMDave
Adria, Italy7,200 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2021
Eight columns of the facade remain of what must once have been a magnificent temple in the Roman Forum, but it is still highly impressive today.
Written July 5, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

SoCalOregonian
Murrieta, CA10,377 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2019
The temple dates from the 5th century BC, but the current ruins date from 4 AD. This is the reconstruction after a fire. All that survives today are 8 columns of the façade and architrave bearing the reconstruction inscription. Even in ruin, it is still an imposing edifice.
Written October 23, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

ChiefGuru
Decatur, IN3,300 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2019
The Temple of Saturn (god of agriculture and wealth) is in the Northwestern end of the Roman Forum at the bee of the Capital Hill. Before the first Temple of Saturn was constructed here, an altar of Saturn (Ara Saturni) apparently already existed on that exact spot. The last King of Rome, Tarquinius Superbus, is credited with ordering the construction of the first Temple of Saturn in the early 5th century B.C. The temple was then completely reconstructed by Munatius Plancus in 42 B.C. The present ruins represent the third incarnation, replacing the version destroyed either by the fire of Carinus in 283 A.D. or possibly a fire subsequent to that one in the early 4th century. The third version of the Temple of Satrn dates to the 4th century A.D. The recycling of material in Roman antiquity is extremely interesting. In the case of the Temple of Saturn, the ruins stand on a pediment of travertine blocks and are made-up of pieces recycled from earlier temples. The columns are of the Ionic order. with eight remaining on the northern facade. The shafts of the columns are made from Egyptian granite. Indicative of their differing history, three are monoliths and the other five are composed of two pieces fitted together. The Ionic capitals are actually the only parts made specifically for the temple. They are from Thasian marble and carved in typical Late Antique style. During the Roman Republic the temple housed the public treasury (aerarium), a function it kept in the Imperial period. According to ancient sources, a statue of Saturn (made of wood and filled with oil) was inside. It was veiled and equipped with a scythe. This temple is another of the magnificent Roman Forum ruins that should be seen.
Written September 3, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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