Arco di Settimio Severo
Arco di Settimio Severo
4.5
Historic SitesAncient RuinsMonuments & Statues
9:00 AM - 7:15 PM
Monday
9:00 AM - 7:15 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 7:15 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 7:15 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 7:15 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 7:15 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 7:15 PM
Sunday
9:00 AM - 7:15 PM
About
At the foot of the Capitoline Hill stands a triumphal arch composed of three archways — one large, central archway flanked by two smaller passages — built in 203 AD by the Emperor Septimius Severus to celebrate his victories over the Parthians.
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The area
Address
Neighbourhood: 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 bubbles268 reviews
Excellent
129
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13
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Terry M
Hamilton, Canada4,642 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2023 • Friends
The best preserved monument in the Roman Forum, it depicts the military successes of the emperor in Parthia. It sits on a base of travertine marble. Made from Proconessian marble, a rare Greek marble, it was dedicated in 203 A.D.
Written 3 April 2023
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.

Mairwen1
United Kingdom9,516 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2022
A lot of the forum ruins consist of scattered blocks, chunks of marble and broken columns and it’s hard to know what you’re looking at. In contrast, Septimius Severus’ triumphal arch is a stand out. It’s one of the most impressive monuments in the Roman Forum.
Standing at a colossal 21m high and made of white Proconessian marble, it’s amazingly well preserved. Relief carvings are somewhat eroded but they can still be clearly seen.
Septimius Severus is not an instantly recognisable name like Julius Caesar or Caligula but he was the first African Emperor, born in 145AD, in what is present day Libya. Seriously ambitious, he conducted a ruthless campaign against his rivals and, as Emperor, he waged two successful wars against the Parthian Empire.
Arches like this were awarded by the Senate to honour great military victories. The conquering hero would also make a triumphal entry into the city, an extravaganza in which they returned to Rome, wearing a laurel wreath and purple garments, riding in a chariot pulled by 4 horses. Usually, the spoils of war led the procession so that everyone could gawp at the vast collection of gold, silver, weapons, slaves, coins and animals that had been captured. You can still see scenes on the arch of Septimius Severus’ triumphal procession with ox-carts full of loot (see photo).
All 4 sides of the arch show various stages of the war. Like some sort of ancient version of Instagram, you can see pictures of the whole thing, from war preparations to battle scenes, Roman soldiers attacking Seleucia, Parthian soldiers fleeing and the citizens surrendering.
ENTRY: It is worth noting that you cannot buy a separate entry to the forum. It is included in the combo Colosseum/Roman Forum ticket and therefore its essential to book ahead.
Written 16 June 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.

FTMDave
Adria, Italy6,786 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2021
Three-gated marble arch in the Roman Forum erected in 203 AD to celebrate military victories in the east.
Written 5 July 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.

dapper777
Monaco32,676 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2020 • Friends
It is undoubtedly one of the most important monuments within the Imperial Fora.
Once you have passed the entrance, along the Via Sacra and heading towards the Capitoline Hill, you arrive at the foot of this magnificent triumphal monument.
It was erected in 203 to glorify the Emperor's military victories against the Parthians.
It is a white marble construction consisting of a main arch framed by two smaller ones. The central one has a vault rich in coffered ceilings.
The monument, which is over 20 meters high, originally had a bronze quadriga on the top with the statues of the leader, who was of African origin, and of his two sons, Lucius Septimius Bassianus (later nicknamed Caracalla) and Publius Septimius Geta.
It is one of the best preserved monuments in the forum. It was built at the foot of the Capitol for the 10-year anniversary of the emperor's reign.
The reliefs represent his victories over the Parthians in the Middle East (today's Iran and a large part of neighboring countries).
It was one of the pedestrian entrances to the forum square.
On the four large panels above the minor arches some scenes from the two campaigns against the Parthians are carved.
It is an extraordinary work of art that we suggest everyone to come and see.
Written 3 April 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.

Malgorzata
12,113 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2019
Septimius Severus Arch is a triumphal arch located in the southwestern part of the Roman Forum in Rome, erected in 203 in honor of Septimius Severus and his sons. It commemorates the emperor's victories during the war campaigns in the east . The arch structure is 25 m wide and 23 m high. The wall is 11.85 m thick . The arch has three gates. The gate is decorated with columns and reliefs depicting river deities. Above the central, largest passage, goddesses Victoria and personifications of the seasons were placed. It can compete in the artistic beauty with the triumphal arch of Constantine. An unusual work of art .One of the best preserved monuments in the Roman Forum. Spend some time looking at this.
Written 20 April 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.

backpacker31
Boynton Beach, FL5,500 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Solo
Triumphal arch dating back to 203AD. It was built in honor of Septimius Severus and his two sons in their victories over the Parthians. It is interesting to note that after Severus died, one son killed the other and wiped all traces of him from this monument! The arch itself contains reliefs, columns, carvings and panels. As of February, 2020 there was a large fence as well as piles of construction debris surrounding the arch. The arch can be seen either from inside the Roman Forum or from the street just outside.
Written 2 March 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.

ERIC W
Knoxville, TN4,215 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Couples
This arch absolutely boggles the mind. How they ever built this just blows my mind. Built for returning troops to enter as they returned from battle. Free to see from foot path above
Written 16 February 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.

Alessandro F
Milan, Italy26,321 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2019 • Solo
The photo of this activity is incorrect, that’s not the Settimio’s Bow.
This superbly made Arch of Triumph was made in 203 to celebrate the victory of Emperor Settimio Severo against Parti ( the soldiers of Empire of Partia - Persia )
Beautiful the sculptures and the reliefs.
It’s no very big as others Triumph arcs but is really wonderful
Written 26 November 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.

AllanJGJ
Wellington, New Zealand3,848 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2019
Most visitors to Rome will, not unreasonably, focus on the beauty and majesty of the oh so numerous attractions that greet them in the eternal city. But if you have the time to do a little research before visiting them you can come away with an entirely different experience. This fine triumphal arch has an interesting history. If you're an art buff you might have seen it in an attractive painting by Canaletto - or at least you would have seen half of it, for by the 18th century there was so much eroded material in the area that it was half buried. But the thing that fascinated me the most was what you can't see on the Arch. Built in the early 3rd century to commemorate victories over the Parthians by Septimus Severus and his sons Caracall and Geta, you will no longer find any images or inscriptions to the last named. The reason is simple: when Septimus Severus died his two sons became joint emperors, but soon thereafter Caracalla had Geta whacked and then removed all mention of him anywhere in Rome, including on this arch. Very reminiscent of Russia in the 1920s and 30s! So as you admire what was originally his shared arch spare a thought for poor old Geta literally wiped from history.
Written 2 November 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.

AdamLeaves
Canberra, Australia520 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2019
Anywhere else in the world you'd have to give this monument a big 5 but in Rome, with two other Triumphal Arches nearby and the whole Roman Forum all around, there's a lot of good stuff.
Written 25 October 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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Arco di Settimio Severo, Rome

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