The Hills of Rome: Signature of an Eternal City

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9781107025974: The Hills of Rome: Signature of an Eternal City
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Rome is 'the city of seven hills'. This book examines the need for the 'seven hills' cliché, its origins, development, impact and borrowing. It explores how the cliché relates to Rome's real volcanic terrain and how it is fundamental to how we define this. Its chronological remit is capacious: Varro, Virgil and Claudian at one end, on, through the work of Renaissance antiquarians, to embrace frescoes and nineteenth-century engravings. These artists and authors celebrated the hills and the views from these hills, in an attempt to capture Rome holistically. By studying their efforts, this book confronts the problems of encapsulating Rome and 'cityness' more broadly and indeed the artificiality of any representation, whether a painting, poem or map. In this sense, it is not a history of the city at any one moment in time, but a history of how the city has been, and has to be, perceived.

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Rome is 'the city of seven hills'. This book explores what is at stake in this cliché and how it has helped countless people think about Rome holistically. Embracing evidence from Varro, Virgil and Claudian to sixteenth-century frescoes and nineteenth-century engravings, it proposes a new way of seeing the city.

About the Author:

Caroline Vout is Senior Lecturer in Classics at the University of Cambridge and a Fellow of Christ's College and the Society of Antiquaries of London. She is a historian and art historian who publishes on a wide range of topics related to Greek and Roman art and its reception, Latin literature and Roman history and is the author of Power and Eroticism in Imperial Rome (Cambridge, 2007). In 2009 she was awarded a Philip Leverhulme Prize for her work on art history and in 2010 was the Hugh Last Fellow at the British School at Rome.

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