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1ClassyLady 68F
3120 posts
12/3/2018 5:15 pm
Rome city sightseeing 2 on Nov 1st and 2nd of 2018

Photo 1: The only Egyptian pyramid in Rome, Italy called "Cestius Pyramid". The Pyramid of Cestius was most likely built between 18 and 12 BC. The 36 meter (about 120 feet) high pyramid was built as a tomb for a wealthy Roman under the sway of all things Egyptian. ... The pyramid rises at a much sharper angle than the famous pyramids in Egypt.

The pyramid was built about 18–12 BC as a tomb for Gaius Cestius, a magistrate and member of one of the four great religious corporations in Rome, the Septemviri Epulonum. It is of brick-faced concrete covered with slabs of white marble standing on a travertine foundation. The pyramid measures 100 Roman feet (29.6 m) square at the base and stands 125 Roman feet (37 m) high.

Not to mention that Rome’s pyramid was in bad shape. Once gleaming, white marble, it had become so dirty that, by the time I first laid eyes on it in 2009, it was a sooty, dark brown-gray. It was so bad that, having just scoured five years of photographs to see if I could find proof for you, it turns out I don’t have a single one — probably because, in all the dozens of times I walked past, it was so grimy I hadn’t felt moved to take a picture.

And finally, except for the occasional “extraordinary opening”, the pyramid was closed to visitors.

That’s all changed.

You’ve probably heard that a spate of restorations have been polishing up Rome’s grubbier monuments lately. Most famously, Colosseum is now gleaming clean. The pyramid, too, got the good old private-funding treatment, thanks to one Yuzo Yagia Japanese fashion tycoon who apparently fell in love with the pyramid in Rome and handed the city €2 million to clean. That. Thing. Up.

The cleaning, which started in spring 2013, finished in February. Let’s just say I didn’t know it was even supposed to be that color.

Also excitingly, it’s now open for tours. I went a couple of weeks ago, and while it’s hard to nab a spot — the group sizes are limited, and the visits run only on weekends — it’s really worth it. Why? For one, because it’s the only way you can actually go inside the pyramid.

Photo 2: Look into a keyhole to view Saint Peter's Square. It is breath-taking beautiful. I have seen it with my own eye (one eye closed). Absolutely beautiful. I had to take a picture from that keyhole to show you.

A peek-a-boo view of St. Peter's dome through the keyhole on the gate to the headquarters of the Knights of Malta on Rome's Aventine Hill

Peek through this keyhole on a piazza designed by Piranesi in 1765, and you will see a garden path that ends with bushes perfectly framing the dome of St. Peter's in the distance.

What you are peering though are the gardens of the Villa del Priorato di Malta, one of the Rome properties of the famous Knights of Malta (I Cavalieri di Malta)—who are technically and more correctly called the Knights of St. John Hospitaler.

This is one of the last surviving orders of knights left over from the Crusades. But before you say, "Cool!" and rush off to join, I should warn you they wear rather unbecoming powder-blue uniforms, and they take a vow of chastity.

The knights left their late medieval home on the island of Malta long ago, and their headquarters are now here in Rome (if you're curious, it is at Via Condotti 68, at the corner of Via Bocca di Leone near the Spanish Steps.) This Aventine villa is actually home to the Order's ambassadors to Italy and the Holy See.

Ambassadors? Yep. The Italian state recognizes the sovereignty of this ancient Military Order, which mean there are actually three nations and three national captials contained within Rome: Italy, the Vatican, and the Knights of Malta.















Honesty is the best policy.


1ClassyLady 68F
3289 posts
12/3/2018 9:53 pm

In fact, I visited 3 countries (nations) in this trip. They are Italy, Vatican and Knights of Malta (or Sovereign Military Order of Malta).

So, up to this date, I have visited 16 countries in total.



Honesty is the best policy.


1ClassyLady 68F
3289 posts
12/3/2018 6:03 pm

AFF is the only website I posted blogs, including my travel itinerary and sightseeing.

The Group #2 people left Rome and fly back to USA in the very early morning of Nov. 2nd, 2018 (Friday). So, I was alone in the hotel that day. I went out by myself and walked on Rome streets took some more picture while the hotel maid cleaned my room.

I came back to watch US stock market from 3:30 pm to 10 pm in Italy (New York time is 9:30 am to 4 pm). California is 9 hours late than Italy time.

OMG, the market was plummet during Oct 29 and continued to go down to "market correction" (10 % ).



Honesty is the best policy.


1ClassyLady 68F
3289 posts
12/3/2018 5:50 pm

I peeked through the keyhole with one eye first, then I put my smartphone camera aimed to the keyhole and clicked the picture to share with you. It is more beautiful to look with eye than took picture from a smartphone. I was stunned by its beauty.



Honesty is the best policy.


1ClassyLady 68F
3289 posts
12/3/2018 5:31 pm

Regard photo 1, from the paragraph of "Not to mention that Rome’s pyramid was in bad shape. Once gleaming, white marble, it had become so dirty that, by the time I first laid eyes on it in 2009, it was a sooty, dark brown-gray. It was so bad that, having just scoured five years of photographs to see if I could find proof for you, it turns out I don’t have a single one — probably because, in all the dozens of times I walked past, it was so grimy I hadn’t felt moved to take a picture."

That "I" is not me. I Googled the word "Cestius pyramid in Rome" and copied down the writer's words. Because the local tour guide mentioned this pyramid had been cleaned by a Japanese. I forgot the detail, so I Googled it "Who cleaned Cestius pyramid" and result came out and I copied down the words. I couldn't remember every word the local tour guide said, so I Googled the key words. Thanks for that Japanese, the pyramid is very clean now.

There is the one and only pyramid in Rome, Italy.



Honesty is the best policy.