Arch of Septimius Severus - a triumphal arch in Rome
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Arch of Septimius Severus

Septimius Severus was a Roman emperor about 200 AD who decided to put up a stone triumphal arch in the Roman forum in order to remind people about his military victories over the Parthians east of Rome. In this picture, you can see the Roman Senate House in the background on the left.

This is the arch from the other side. You can see that this arch, built more than a hundred years after the Arch of Titus, has a very different artistic style. Instead of big relief carvings on the inside of the arch, this one has several small relief carvings on the front and back.

Learn by doing: draw a triumphal arch illustrating the achievements of another historical figure.
More about the arch of Septimius Severus

Bibliography and further reading about the Arch of Septimius Severus:

The Colosseum & the Roman Forum, by Martyn Whittock (2002). Easy reading.

The Roman Forum, by Michael Grant (1970). Out of date, but Michael Grant is an entertaining writer with a simple style which teenagers may appreciate.

Ancient Roman Art, by Susie Hodge (1998). Easy reading.

Roman Art: Romulus to Constantine, by Nancy and Andrew Ramage (4th Edition 2004). The standard textbook.

The Arch of Septimius Severus in the Roman Forum, by R. Brilliant (1987). Unfortunately out of print, but libraries should still be able to get it.

Arch of Titus
Arch of Constantine
More about Roman Art
Ancient Rome
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Karen Carr is Associate Professor Emerita, Department of History, Portland State University. She holds a doctorate in Classical Art and Archaeology from the University of Michigan. Follow her on Instagram or Twitter.
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