Fun facts about ancient Rome

Those who know me, know I’m a sucker for ancient history facts. Where we talked about Egypt once, and Celtic mythology, today will be all about ancient Rome! So, let’s jump right in!

  1. Rome was founded by two brothers nursed by a she-wolf

The two twin brothers were called Romulus and Remus and were abandoned shortly after their birth. They were discovered by a she-wolf on the banks of the Tiber, who picked them up and fed them. Eventually the boys grew up to found a city. But like brothers, they argued over who would be the ruler of their new city, and Remus was murdered. Romulus became ruler and named the city after himself: Rome.

2. They worshipped a lot of different gods and goddesses

And every god and goddess had its specialty: Venus was worshiped when you had a problem in love and Janus when there was a change in your life. Even the emperors became gods, and the Romans also imported gods from other countries.

3. They sometimes would flood the whole Colosseum or Circus Maximus for a battle by boat

Large boats with warriors on them fought it out in the water and were complete down to the live props, such as alligators.

4. It’s underground

Ever wondered why all the ancient stuff is so much lower than street level? That’s because after so many hundreds of years the city has piled up, building on top of another building.

Colosseum, Italy

5. Vestal virgins were chosen when they were less than 10 years old

Then they were taken to the temple where they’d stay for the rest of their lives. In ancient Rome, vestal virgins were like priestesses. They kept the sacred flame of Rome from extinguishing (if it did, it was very bad for the city) and presided over many of the religious rites of Rome.

6. Two hills of Rome have given their names to words related to their roles

The Capitoline Hill, where the main gods were, lent its name to the word ‘capital’. While the Palatine Hill, where the emperors made their palaces, lent its name to the word ‘palace’. There are many more ancient Roman words that can be found in English today, such as the months of the year.

7. What and how they eat

They used to eat dormice and other weird foods like flamingo. If you were invited to dinner in Ancient Rome, you would be led to a room with sofas, not tables and chairs. They supported themselves on their left arm and used their right to bring their food to their mouths.

8. It used to be covered in graffiti

Although their graffiti was mostly scratched in stone and not painted with colour.

White Concrete Structure

9. They used to wash clothes in urine

Because urine contains ammonia, a powerful bleach, the ancient Romans washed their clothes in their pee. On many street corners there were public urinals for men to use and their contents were picked up every day and taken to the laundries.

Love, Deem/Skye Lewis ❀

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