Monument to Vittorio Emanuele II
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The Monumento Nazionale a Vittorio Emanuele II (National Monument of Victor Emmanuel II) or Altare della Patria (Altar of the Fatherland) or "Il Vittoriano" is a monument to honour Victor Emmanuel, the first king of a unified Italy, located in Rome, Italy. It occupies a site between the Piazza Venezia and the Capitoline Hill. The monument was designed by Giuseppe Sacconi in 1895; sculpture for it was parceled out to established sculptors all over Italy. It was inaugurated in 1911 and completed in 1935.
The monument, "chopped with terrible brutality into the immensely complicated fabric of the hill", is built of pure white marble from Botticino, Brescia, and features majestic stairways, tall Corinthian columns, fountains, a huge equestrian sculpture of Victor Emmanuel and two statues of the goddess Victoria riding on quadrigas. The structure is 135 m (443 ft) wide and 70 m (230 ft) high. If the quadrigae and winged victories are included, the height is to 81 m (266 ft). The base of the structure houses the museum of Italian Reunification.
The monument holds the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier with an eternal flame, built under the statue of Italy after World War I following an idea of General Giulio Douhet. The body of the unknown soldier was chosen on October 26, 1921 from amongst 11 unknown remains by Maria Bergamas, a woman from Gradisca d'Isonzo whose only child was killed during World War I. The son's body was never recovered. The selected unknown was transferred from Aquileia, where the ceremony with Bergamas had taken place to Rome and buried in a state funeral on November 4, 1921.
The monument was controversial since its construction destroyed a large area of the Capitoline Hill with a Medieval neighbourhood for its sake. The monument itself is often regarded as pompous and too large. It is clearly visible to most of the city of Rome despite being boxy in general shape and lacking a dome or a tower. The monument is also glaringly white, making it highly conspicuous amidst the generally brownish buildings surrounding it, and its stacked, crowded nature has lent it several derogatory nicknames. Romans sometimes refer to the structure by a variety of irreverent slang expressions, such as "Zuppa Inglese", "the wedding cake", and "the false teeth", while Americans invading Rome in 1944 labeled it "the typewriter", a nickname also adopted by the locals. Despite all this criticism, the monument still attracts a large number of visitors. Former President of the Republic Carlo Azeglio Ciampi fostered the opening of the Vittoriano as a public forum and viewpoint over the City core. This new accessibility allowed visitors to become familiar with the landmark, enabling it to grow in popular, if not critical, reputation.
- ^ Sandra Berresford, Italian Memorial Sculpture, 1820-1940: A Legacy of Love56.
- ^ a b c d Vidotto, Vittorio (PDF). The Invention of Two Capital Cities. Archaeology and Public Spaces in Athens and Rome. European Association for Urban History. http://www.historia.su.se/urbanhistory/eauh/papers/r2_vidotto.pdf. Retrieved 2007-02-26.
- ^ Peter Davey, "Outrage - the Vittorio Emanuele II monument in Rome", The Architectural Review (October 1996).
- ^ a b d'Aquino, Niccolo (February 2001). [Expression error: Missing operand for > "Capitals: Rome"]. Europe (403): 36–38.
- ^ Atkinson, David; Cosgrove, Denis (March 1998). [Expression error: Missing operand for > "Urban Rhetoric and Embodied Identities: City, Nation, and Empire at the Vittorio Emanuele II Monument in Rome, 1870-1945"]. Annals of the Association of American Geographers 88 (1): 28–49. doi:10.1111/1467-8306.00083.
- ^ Peter Davey (October 1996). [Expression error: Missing operand for > "Outrage"]. The Architectural Review 200 (1196): 25.
- ^ Steeves, Rick (2009-02-04). "Here's what's new in Italy for 2009". The Seattle Times (Tribune Media Services). http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/ricksteveseurope/2008707252_websteves04.html?cmpid=2628. Retrieved 2009-02-05.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Vittoriano (Roma)|
- Maps and aerial photos - Google Maps
- Il Vittoriano - web page by the website of Quirinale, residence of the Head of State