Celebrate Rome’s Birthday at the Circus Maximus!
According to tradition, on April 21, 753 B.C., Romulus and his twin brother, Remus, founded the city of Rome – and the rest, as they say, is history!
Now every year, a huge celebration takes place directly below the place where the Urbs Aeterna was supposedly born. t’s the “Natale di Roma“, or “the birthday of Rome”. Many organizations come together holding exhibitions, setting up reenactments and a massive costumed parade with thousands of participants dressed up as gladiators, soldiers and priestesses.
The main host behind the 4-day event is Gruppo Storico Romano, which is famously the responsible behind the wildly popular Gladiator School Rome.
This year, the different events will take place between April 19 and April 22 on Via dei Fori Imperiali, i.e. the boulevard connecting the Colosseum and Piazza Venezia, and at the Circus Maximus.
There, locals and foreign visitors alike will be able to listen to ancient Roman music as performed by the Histriones, a project founded by members of the Gruppo Storico Romano themselves; they will be able to watch a game of Harpastum, ancient Rome’s football-cum-rugby; kids will be able to play as young Romans did.
And it doesn’t end there: onlookers will get to see the reenactment of the digging of the furrow, which was how new cities were founded (Rome included), and they will relive the dramatic siege of Masada. Weapon enthusiasts will appreciate booths with replicas of daggers and shields, as well as actual siege engines as the onagro, rebuilt in a 1:1 scale.
The whole program for the Natale di Roma can be found here: look out for a handy Google Translate button at the top of the section. Or just take a stroll in the Circus Maximus area over the weekend!