Another Collapse at the Domus Aurea

The incipit of a piece from ANSA (tip o’ the pileus to Francesca Tronchin):

Part of the ceiling of Roman Emperor Nero’s Domus Aurea collapsed on Tuesday.Some 60 square meters of the baths built on top of the Golden House by the emperor who succeeded Nero, Trajan, came down because of seepage from recent heavy rains, civil protection experts said.The area where the collapse occurred, a tunnel that was once part of the baths, has been cordoned off because it is close to the entrance to public gardens above it, they said.”Now we’re trying to seal it off so no more rain will get into the hole,” they said.Rome Mayor Gianni Alemanno said he was “very worried” about the state of the structure, one of Rome’s most celebrated tourist attractions.The special commissioner for the site, Luciano Marchetti, said “more collapses were possible”.The situation, he said, is “one of extreme alarm”.The Domus Aurea, built by Nero soon after the great fire in Rome in 64 AD, has been shut since 2005 for work to make it more stable.It was closed after masonry fell from flaking walls and a high level of dangerous seepage was detected.The current project aims to open up 2,600 square metres of the site.The top of the Domus on the Colle Oppio Oppian Hill is covered with parks, trees and roads whose weight and polluting effect are a constant threat.Archaeologists have also been trying to unearth more of the massive baths that Trajan built.The golden palace of the ill-famed Nero 37-68 AD first re-opened in June 1999 after 21 years in which it was Rome’s best-kept secret – open only to art officials and special guests.Some five billion lire 2.5 million euros were spent in refurbishing the visitable rooms filled with frescoes of weird animals like winged lions, griffins and tritons which led to the original coinage of the word ‘grotesque’, from the Italian word for cave grotto.

via Domus Aurea roof collapses |

Long time readers of rogueclassicism will remember that the Domus Aurea reopened to the public back in 2006; by 2007, frequent rains had limited how much of it was open to the public;  it closed again in December 2008 and has not reopened since.

One thought on “Another Collapse at the Domus Aurea

  1. The Domus Aurea of Rome – Original news article from the Italian Newspaper: Corr. Della Sera (30.03.2010 & 23.06.1999), along with supplimentry links to fotos and video.

    ~ Crolla soffitto della Domus Aurea. – Il crollo ha interessato 60 metri quadri della volta di una delle gallerie Traianee. CORRIERE DELLA SERA. (30.03.2010).

    ~ Di cui ora saranno accessibili trentadue stanze DOMUS AUREA. La reggia di Nerone. CORRIERE DELLA SERA. (23.06.1999: p. 33).

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