Marvels

The pictorial remains of the Domus Transitoria

The Palatine Museum

The pictorial remains of the Domus Transitoria were identified in 1912 beneath the triclinium of the Domus Flavia and removed in 1956. By their stylistic mastery and the richness of the materials used, they occupy a place of extraordinary importance in the art of the Neronian age. Suetonius, in describing the subject of Nero’s first residence on the Palatine, wrote that “everything was covered with gold, precious stones and mother-of-pearl”: true enough, the paintings from the Neronian nymphaeum, inlaid with glass paste and semiprecious stones, exactly match Suetonius’s words, together with the floors and walls inlaid with coloured marbles. The decorative scheme of the frescoed vaults, now exhibited at the Palatine Museum, reproduces a coffered ceiling, with a virtual framework of red beams enclosing, among grotesque vegetation, scenes depicting the heroes of the Homeric epic.

 

Admission with Roman Forum-Palatine S.U.P.E.R. ticket