The Arco di Traiano (“Arch of Trajan”) is considered the symbol of Ancona and stands near the city’s port. The 14-meter-high arch dates back to the 2nd century and was erected in honor of the emperor who had the city’s port made larger.
Arch of Trajan Ancona
Address: Lungomare Vanvitelli – Ancona. The monument can be seen from outside.
History and description
The Arco di Traiano was built in the early 2nd century, in honor of Emperor Trajan, who had the city’s port enlarged. Ancona thus became the main Roman port of call to the Dacians (the present Romanians, who after being conquered by Trajan would also adopt the Latin language).
Trajan’s Arch is 14 meters high and is made of marble from Imetto, Greece. The architect was Apollodoro di Damasco, who had provided a design with a single arch. The monument stands at the top of a series of steps and is further characterized by four columns and a large entablature.
Many of the original decorations, including inscriptions, friezes and gilded bronze naval rams of ships were destroyed by the Goths (551) or the Saracens (11th century).
Atop the arch were three metal statues, with the Emperor himself on horseback between his wife Plòtina and his sister Marciana.
The inscription on the upper part thanks the Emperor for paying out of his own pocket for the rebuilding of the port which made the city a lot safer.