• April 26, 2019

Theatre of Marcellus

Theatre of Marcellus

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Theatre of Marcellus was one of the ancient theatres in Rome. It finds its place between the Tiber and the Capitol hill on the left side of the river. This area is also known as Campo Marzio.

Julius Caesar

Porticus Octaviae close to Theatre of Marcellus in Rome

Surroundings of Theatre of Marcellus

Julius Caesar planned the construction of this theatre. He wanted to compete with another theatre. It also took its place in Campo Marzio. Its name was Theatre of Pompeius. Julius Caesar found an appropriate place for this building. He had to demolish other buildings, which were already standing in this area. It included also some of the sacred buildings such as the temple of Diana.


Caesar was murdered before the actually started with works on the. It was the emperor Augustus who continued n this project. His plans got even bigger dimensions for this ancient theatre. He also decided o reconstruct buildings which surrounded this area. That included, for example, the temple of Apollo and the temple of Bellona.

Broken Chair

Detail of Theatre of Marcellus in Rome

Remains of Theatre of Marcellus in Campo Marzio

They officially inaugurated the theatre in 13 BC. Augustus dedicated this inauguration to the son of his sister Octavia who died prematurely. There is a legend that during this games Augustus throne broke and he ended up on the floor:)! During the inauguration, they put on stage four African columns from one of the palaces on Palatine hill. Also, a golden statue of Marcellus was put inside the theatre.

The family Orsini

In medieval times it was gradually occupied by small buildings and transformed into a fortified castle. Many noble families were passing this building later from one to another. You could visit numerous shops and buildings here. They took places between the columns of this ancient theatre. In the 18th century, it became the property of the family Orsini. At the same time

they unpaved the arches, which were then buried for about 4 m in height.

Inspiration for the Colosseum

Theatre of Marcellus nearby the Jewish district in Rome

View of Theatre of Marcellus with the actual apartments on the top of this ancient building

Do you know the difference between theatre and amphitheatre? Theatre had a stage in front. There ware seats in a half-circle around this stage. In amphitheatres, the stage, or arena, was in the middle of the building. The spectators sat all around this arena. That is why theatres had circled shapes. The most famous one is probably the Colosseum. Did you know that they took inspiration in Theatre of Marcellus when building the famous Colosseum:)?

Unfortunately, the stage of ancient theatre is not preserved anymore. In old documents, you can still find how it looked before. They celebrated this scene for its beauty and perfect sound. The stage consisted of six columns and big exedra behind them.

Summer in Isola Tiberina

Nowadays you can visit this archaeological area and admire its beauty. It is connected also with a Jewish ghetto. There you can find many cosy restaurants and bars. Just across the bridge, there is a famous island. It is called Isola Tiberina. You can find there one of the most famous hospitals in Rome. During the summer season, you can visit there also open-air cinema. You can also spend your evening there one of the bars which take its place there.


Let us take you there on Segways! Our guides will recommend you many interesting places to visit in this neighbourhood. If you cross the river you will arrive at a district called Trastevere. Actually, if you translate the name of this district it really means “across the Tiber”:)!It is famous for its narrow streets, cosy restaurants and street musicians at every corner. You can enjoy a glass of prosecco in one of the bars after exploring this beautiful city fro all day long. We have to admit the atmosphere in this is really unforgettable.

Visit Theatre of Marcellus during our Segway Grand City Tour.