n Acta Classica : Proceedings of the Classical Association of South Africa - Vespasian and the city of Rome : the centrality of the Capitolium

Volume 53, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0065-1141
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The Capitoline was important to Vespasian as the first Flavian emperor. On accession, Vespasian was positioning himself in relation to the Roman past and differentiating his regime from the Julio-Claudians, with the main emphasis on establishing his concern for the populace, in contrast to the perceived selfishness of Nero. The temple of Jupiter Optimus Maximus, the first major temple built in the early city, and the destination of Roman triumphs, had been a casualty in the Civil War of AD 68-69, and was rebuilt to highlight his interest in tradition, and to place the Capitolium at the centre of his political programme. The spoils from the Jewish War made possible a great deal of public building elsewhere in the city, including the Forum of Peace and the Colosseum; these buildings reinforced the message about the military success of the Flavians and the benefits they were bringing to the populace.

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