The Quirinal is the tallest one of the original Seven Hills of Rome. At present, the Quirinal Palace, the residence of the Italian president, is on the top of this hill, the highest of the seven.
Quirinal Hill Rome
History and curiosities
There were settlements on the hill long before Rome existed, starting with the tribe of the Sabines (whose women would later be kidnapped by the Romans, according to legend). The hill’s name is also of Sabine origin, being named after the tribe’s war god Quirinus.
Over the centuries, the hill was always a place where intellectuals used to gather. Pomponius Atticus, Cicero’s editor, had a publishing house there. Virgilius lived on the hill. During the Renaissance this was where literary circles met. At some point, the Pope even had one of the louder literary groups, including one of his own Cardinals, imprisoned in the Castel Sant’Angelo.
Points of interest Quirinal Hill
Piazza del Quirinale
The Piazza del Quirinale is one of the city’s oldest squares. During the Middle Ages, the hill was also called Monte Cavallo (“Horse Hill”), because of the sculpture group consisting of two horses with attendants that stands in the square.
Palazzo del Quirinale
The Palazzo del Quirinale is the most striking building on the square. It began its existence as the Pope’s summer residence, was occupied by the King of Italy from 1870, and later, after the abolition of kingship, became the seat of the President.
Scuderie del Quirinale
The former stables of the Quirinal Palace are now known as Scuderie del Quirinale. It is in this building that the most prestigious art exhibitions Rome has to offer are usually held.