Saturday, 9 June 2012

Arch of Trajan in Benevento

Italian Post have issued a regular stamp in the "Il patrimonio artistico e culturale italiano" (Italian Artistic and Cultural Heritage) series dedicated to the Arch of Trajan in Benevento on September 09, 2011.


The stamp shows the Arch of Trajan, erected in Benevento between 114 and 117 A.D. to commemorate the opening of the Via Appia Traiana road and dedicated to the emperor Trajan. The words “ARCO DI TRAIANO” (Arch of Trajan), “BENEVENTO”, “ITALIA”, and the denomination “€ 0,60” complete the stamp.

It was restore several times due to ageing and earthquakes: under Pope Urban VIII, then in 1661, 1713 (when the marble architrave crumbled down) and 1792. In 1850, in the occasion of Pope Pius IX's visit in Benevento, it was isolated with the demolition of the annexed structures and houses.

The arch has a single, barrel-vaulted archway, and is 15.60 m-high and 8.60 m wide. Each façade has four semi-columns in correspondence of the two side pillars, supporting an entablature. Above the architraves is an attic which, like the latter, juts out above the archway.

The arch is built in limestone covered by opus quadratum with Parian marble slabs. It has a rich sculpted decoration on the two main façades.

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