Santa Maria in Aracoeli: An Altar to Heaven
The church of Santa Maria in Aracoeli stands on the spot where, according to a medieval legend, the Tiburtine Sibyl appeared to the emperor Augustus (r. 27 BCE - 14 CE) to announce the birth of the son of God, in whose honour, the emperor duly raised an altar on the Capitol, an altar (ara) to heaven (coeli).
A flight of 124 ancient marble steps leads up to the church.
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My name is David Lown and I am an art historian from Cambridge, England. Since 2001 I have lived in Italy, where I run private and
small-group walking tours
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