ROMA ARCHEOLOGIA E RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA: Update – The Forum and Temple of Trajan in Rome (2018-20): “L’evidenza archeologica ha dimostrato che il tempio c’è.” With New Comments & New Information Courtesy of Prof. James E. Packer (18 March 2020).

Note: I have actually been working on this brief notice on the The Forum and Temple of Trajan in Rome (2019-2020) since May 2020 onwards (1), but, with the recent Italian ‘Chinese virus’ Crisis in late Feb thru March 2020, I have been sidelined communicating, discussing and attempting help my dear friend in Rome.

ROMA ARCHEOLOGIA E RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA: Update – The Forum and Temple of Trajan in Rome (2018-20): “L’evidenza archeologica ha dimostrato che il tempio c’è.” With New Comments & Information Courtesy of Prof. James E. Packer (18 March 2020).

Update – Rome recently in late January 30 2020 and in early 11-13 December 2019, the numerous Italian scholars in Rome affiliated with the long-term research and studies of the Forum and Temple of Trajan at the two following conference’s (see below) presented and discussed the results of their recent work on the Forum and Temple of Trajan, see:

I). Rome – LA TOPOGRAFIA DELL’AREA A NORD DEL FORO DI TRAIANO. Giornata di studio. Rome, the Auditorium dell’ Ara Pacis (30 January 2020).

Abstract – La giornata di studio è finalizzata a confrontare differenti esperienze della ricerca archeologica riguardanti un’area di grande importanza nella topografia antica della città. In essa infatti doveva trovarsi il grande tempio di Traiano e Plotina divinizzati la cui esatta localizzazione e consistenza sono, da anni, al centro di un intenso dibattito fra gli specialisti. Verranno anche presentati i risultati di nuovi scavi effettuati dalla Scuola Spagnola [see: note 2] nei sotterranei della sua sede di via di S. Eufemia oltre a quelli delle indagini realizzate dalla Città Metropolitana di Roma nel sottosuolo di palazzo Valentini. Si ripercorreranno le tappe della scoperta degli auditoria adrianei di piazza Venezia, a cura del Parco Archeologico del Colosseo, e verranno esposte nuove teorie riguardanti alcuni dei principali monumenti esistenti in antico nell’area oggetto di studio. Infine saranno illustrati i risultati più recenti della ricerca sulla topografia e sulla decorazione architettonica del Foro di Traiano.

Fonte / source:
— Convegno La topografia dell’area nord del Foro di Traiano/ 30 de Enero de 2020. Rome, EEHAR the Spanish School of History and Archaeology in Rome (accessed late January 2020).
https://www.eehar.csic.es/convegno-la-topografia-dellarea-nord-del-foro-di-traiano-30-de-enero-de-2020/ (3).

Surprisingly, after a lengthy search on the internet, apparently no one from the Italian TV or newspaper media (print, internet or social media resources) in Rome reported on the furthcoming or actual ‘La topografia dell’area nord del Foro di Traiano’ conference on 30 January 2020? But, then again since mid-t0-late 2019 and up-to early 2020, for some unknown reason compared to past years (2008-18), the recent news of the archaeological & restoration work in the area of the Imperial Fora of Rome has not been covered by the Italian media? (4).

The only mention of the ‘La topografia dell’area nord del Foro di Traiano’ conference (30 January 2020) is brief notice recently posted on the following Facebook page:

I.1. Dr. Riccardo Montalbano (ed.), Qualche breve considerazione sul convegno “LA TOPOGRAFIA DELL’AREA A NORD DEL FORO DI TRAIANO”, in: Topografia di Roma antica / Topography of Ancient Rome. Facebook (01 Feb. 2020) (accessed 19 March 2020).

Fonte / text & foto / sources:
Dr. Riccardo Montalbano (ed.), Topografia di Roma antica / Topography of Ancient Rome. Facebook (01 Feb. 2020). https://www.facebook.com/groups/540545102790727/

Nel corso della giornata di studi sono emersi numerosi dati inediti e sono stati proposti spunti di grande interesse. In particolare:

1). Presenza di un incredibile palinsesto murario rinvenuto nelle cantine della nuova sede della Escuela Española de Historia y Arqueología en Roma, in via di Sant’Eufemia (intervento: Antonio pizzo e Massimo Vitti). L’elemento più interessante, a mio avviso, è la presenza di resti riferibili a un colombario (datazione proposta: età augustea), che solleva nuovi problemi circa la linea pomeriale nella zona (chiaramente connesso con le mura repubblicane che, come noto, correvano lungo la sella poi cancellata a partire dall’età domizianea).

2). Rilettura complessiva delle 3 aule – Auditoria vs Athenaeum – con la novità riguardante un presunto ingresso da sud, costituito dalla “quinta” rinvenuta nel 1932 e ora messa in connessione con il sistema delle tre aule. Questo fronte, movimentato da una grande abside, avrebbe schermato l’irregolare disposizione retrostante (intervento: R. Rea).
3). Templum divi Traiani et Plotinae: secondo P. Baldassarri la presenza del tempio, un ottastilo con colonne da 50 piedi, è giustificata dalla grande fondazione rinvenuta (la cui larghezza però non è sufficiente a giustificare la fronte del tempio così come immaginato; per questo motivo, essa viene riferita solo alla scalinata del tempio, dunque all’interasse tra le guance della scalinata di accesso frontale), oltre che dalle camerelle di fondazione. In questa ricostruzione, non si rinuncia al grande portico a ferro di cavallo (a mio avviso, lo sviluppo a est della domus B di palazzo Valentini sembra far escludere questa soluzione). Bellissimi i frammenti architettonici rinvenuti, tra cui uno splendido frammento di rilievo con grifo.

4). Nuovi preziosi dati vengono dalla zone biblioteche del foro di Traiano e, in particolare, dall’esplorazione della cappella sepolcrale della chiesa del Ss. Nome di Maria e dalle strutture individuate (parte della biblioteca orientale). I nuovi dati permettono di articolare nel dettaglio il sistemare delle scale e degli accessi.

Inoltre, si ripropone un’altra alternativa circa l’ingresso del Foro da nord, con un grande arco di ingresso (intervento R. Meneghini – E. Bianchi), arco che secondo E. La Rocca è da identificare con l’arco partico noto dalle fonti letterarie (intervento E. La Rocca).

5). Interessantissime le osservazioni sul frammento 36b della Forma Urbis, la cui iscrizione sinora era stata letta com TEM PL (um) e identificato con il complesso campense dedicato a Matidia. La novità, correttamente rilevata, consiste nella presenza di un separatore e un’eccessiva spaziature tra TEM – PL, da leggere come Tem(plum) Plotinae (come proposto). Ciò apre interessanti prospettive sia epigrafiche (questione della dedica del tempio e della titolatura inversa tra Traiano e Plotina), sia topografiche (collocazione del frammento rispetto alla griglia della FUM).
6). Di grande utilità, infine, le considerazione su tutto l’apparato decorativo del foro (intervento L. Ungaro) e sui frammenti di ordine gigante rinvenuti nell’area (intervento M. Milella). Ma su questi temi, sutor ne ultra crepidam…

II). Rome – Dr. Paola Baldassarri (Città Metropolitana di Roma Capitale), “L’area a Nord della Colonna Traiana e il Tempio dei divi Traiano e Plotina : riflessioni in merito alle indagini di Palazzo Valentini.” Conférence – Topographie et urbanisme de la Rome antique, Caen, France (11-13 Dec. 2019).

During the conference Dr. Baldassarri presented the following lecture on the “L’area a Nord della Colonna Traiana e il Tempio dei divi Traiano e Plotina,” in Caen, France (Dec. 2019). This presentation briefly discusses the recent series of excavations below the Palazzo Valentini in 2018-19, also based upon her recent published work on the Temple in the following journal articles (including two published works in English [2011, 2014-15]).

Fortunately, the various presentations at the recent Conference – Topographie et urbanisme de la Rome antique, Caen, France (11-13 Dec. 2019), with these presentation lectures recorded and now available on You-tube as of mid-January 2020. Note: several screenshots taken from Dr. Baldassarri’s video and converted into photographs are also republished here.

— Dr. Paola Baldassarri (Città Metropolitana di Roma Capitale), “L’area a Nord della Colonna Traiana e il Tempio dei divi Traiano e Plotina : riflessioni in merito alle indagini di Palazzo Valentini.” Conférence – Topographie et urbanisme de la Rome antique, Caen, France (11-13 Dec. 2019). You-Tube (17 January 2020) [24:50].
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2uoeQ1MVDR0&t=313s

As mentioned Dr. Baldassarri’s lecture presentation is based upon several of her recently published works (2012-18) on the “il Tempio dei divi Traiano e Plotina” several as cited and available in PDF (particularly in RM 122 [2016], pp. 171-202) as listed here below :

— Paola Baldassari (2018), “Gli scavi Palazzo Valentini e il Templum Divi Traiani et Divae Plotinae: omaggio di Adriano divis parentibus.” [Unpublished] paper / lecture read at the following conference in Rome = ‘Il Convegno Internazionale “adventus Hadriani 118 – 2018”’. Rome, Italy (4 July 2018). http://aha.uniroma2.it/it/ S.v., https://independent.academia.edu/PBaldassarri

— Paola Baldassarri, (2017), “Templum divi Traiani et divae Plotinae : nuovi dati dalle indagini archeologiche a Palazzo Valentini.” RendPontAcc. 89, pp. 599-648. (Abstract in Italian & English). [= Part. II of] “FORO TRAIANO: ORGANIZZAZIONE DEL CANTIERE E APPROVVIGIONAMENTO DEI MARMI ALLA LUCE DEI RECENTI DATI DI PALAZZO VALENTINI.”
http://www.pont-ara.org/index.php?module=Pubblicazioni&func=display&pubid=17

— Paola Baldassarri (2016), “Indagini archeologiche a Palazzo Valentini. Nuovi dati per la ricostruzione del tempio di Traiano.” RM 122, pp. 171-202 [in PDF]. (Abstract in English).

— Paola Baldassarri (2015), “Le indagini archeologiche a Palazzo Valentini (Roma) e il tempio dei divi Traiano e Plotina,” pp. 1689 – 1756 [in PDF], in: Paola Ruggeri et al., L’Africa romana Momenti di continuità e rottura: bilancio di trent’anni di convegni L’Africa romana. Vol. II., Rome: Carocci editore (2015).
https://www.academia.edu/32087781/Paola_Baldassarri_Le_indagini_archeologiche_a_Palazzo_Valentini_e_il_tempio_dei_divi_Traiano_e_Plotina

— Paola Baldassarri (2013), “Alla ricerca del tempio perduto: indagini archeologiche a Palazzo Valentini e il templum Divi Traiani et Divae Plotinae.” Arch.Cl. 64., pp. 371–481 [in PDF]. (Abstract in English).
https://www.academia.edu/29206723/Alla_ricerca_del_tempio_perduto_le_indagini_archeologiche_a_Palazzo_Valentini_e_il_templum_divi_Traiani_et_divae_Plotinae

— Paola Baldassarri; Antonella Lumacone & Luca Salvatori (2012), “Nuove indagini archeologiche a Palazzo Valentini. Il tempio dei divi Traiano e Plotina.” Forma Urbis, XVII, 5 (May 2012): 45-52 [in PDF]. https://wp.me/pPRv6-2ab

For a brief summary by Dr. Baldassarri research on the Temple of Trajan in English (2011, 2014 & 2015), see:

— ROMA ARCHEOLOGIA e RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA. ROMA – rinvenimenti sotto Palazzo Valentini – l´esistenza e una porzione di un edificio che potrebbe essere l´introvabile Tempio del Divo Traiano. LA REPUBBLICA (19/05/2007) & Luisa Napoli & Paola Baldassarri, RESEARCH ARTICLE – Palazzo Valentini: Archaeological discoveries and redevelopment projects. Frontiers of Architectural Research, Vol. 4.2 (June 2015): 91-99. https://wp.me/pPRv6-4VP

— ROMA ARCHEOLOGICA & RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA: “Roberto Del Signore & Paola Baldassarri, Provincia di Roma, “The multimedia museum: an original meeting between antiquities and innovation in the Roman domus of Palazzo Valentini,” Conference – ATHENS, GREECE (2 OCT. 2014) [PDF], pp. 1-81. [And Foto: Dott.ssa Arch. Maria G. Ercolino (2014)].
https://wp.me/pPRv6-2QS

— Paola Baldassarri (2011), “Archaeological Excavations at Palazzo Valentini: a residential area in the shade of the Trajan’s Forum,” pp. 43-67 [in PDF], in: Mustafa Sahin et al., 11th INTERNATIONAL COLLOQUIUM ON ANCIENT MOSAICS, Bursa October 16th–20th 2009, Istanbul : Uludağ University (2011).
https://www.academia.edu/29207218/Archaeological_Excavations_at_Palazzo_Valentini_a_Residential_Area_in_the_Shade_of_the_Trajans_Forum

III). Rome, the ‘Il Foro di Traiano’ and the ‘il Tempio di Traiano e Plotina’ and the Sovrintendenza Capitolina / “Il Foro di Traiano / Il tempio che non c’è.” (April 2019) (re-accessed March 2020).

Sometime in March and or April 2019, after nearly a decade of providing no new useful information on the Imperial Fora (2008-19), the Sovrintendenza Capitolina ai Beni Culturali’s webpage for the Fori Imperiali (Roman Antiquity [and now thru through the Modern era]) finally updated its website with the new information as listed here below:

— Sovrintendenza Capitolina (April 2019 [March 2020]) = “Home » Patrimonio » Roma antica » Aree archeologiche » Fori Imperiali.” =
http://www.sovraintendenzaroma.it/i_luoghi/roma_antica/aree_archeologiche/fori_imperiali.

“L’area prima dei Fori, Il Foro di Cesare, Il Foro di Augusto, Il Templum Pacis, Il Foro di Nerva, Il Foro di Traiano, Mercati di Traiano e Museo dei Fori Imperiali, La Terrazza domizianea & I Fori Imperiali dal Medioevo ad oggi.” And “Bibliografia essenziale” & “Fori Imperiali – Dati archivio.”

In the section of the Sovrintendenza’s website devoted to the Forum and Temple of Trajan, now listing the following information =

1.1). Sovrintendenza Capitolina / “Il Foro di Traiano / Il tempio che non c’è.” (April 2019 [March 2020]). http://www.sovraintendenzaroma.it/content/il-tempio-che-non-c%E2%80%99%C3%A8

‘Il tempio che non c’è – Nel Foro di Traiano mancava il tempio, edificio che abbiamo visto invece costantemente presente negli altri Fori Imperiali. In passato si riteneva che un gigantesco tempio dedicato a Traiano e Plotina divinizzati (e comunque non a una divinità “tradizionale”, come era sempre accaduto) fosse stato edificato dal successore di Traiano, ossia Adriano (117-138 d.C.) al limite settentrionale del complesso, in un’area sostanzialmente corrispondente a quella in cui oggi si trova Palazzo Valentini. Le ricerche effettuate in tempi recenti nei sotterranei del Palazzo hanno invece riportato alla luce resti, anche consistenti, di edifici d’abitazione, ridimensionando o escludendo così la presenza di un tempio in questo punto.’

An alternative website, the ‘fori-imperiali.info’ (April 2019), re-publishes the same information from the Sovrintendenza’s website: “Roma antica » Aree archeologiche » Fori Imperiali »”, with the exception of providing an English Language version, as follows:

‘The temple that isn’t there – Within Trajan’s Forum there is no temple, a building which is present in all the other Imperial Fora. In the past it was believed that an enormous temple had been built to celebrate the deified Trajan and Plotina (and not as a “traditional” divinity as had always been the case). This temple was believed to have been built by Trajan’s successor Hadrian (117-138 A.D.) at the northern edge of the complex, in an area that is essentially where Palazzo Valentini stands today. Recent researches carried out in the basement of that building has brought to light ruins of private habitations, some quite substantial, which would appear to exclude the presence of such a temple in that area or at least reduce its possible size.’

Additional information in English on the Forum / Temple of Trajan in English, cited from Fori-imperiali.info “I Fori Imperiali” (April 2019) = http://fori-imperiali.info/ & “Il Foro di Traiano / Il tempio chenon c’è” .http://fori-imperiali.info/005-2/ (Accesssed April 2019) (re-accessed March 2020).

The Sovrintendenza’s website on ‘il foro di Traiano » il tempio che non c’è’ offers no attribution to the source of the photograph (i.e., digital reconstruction of the Forum / Temple of Trajan); while the ‘fori-imperiali.info’ website cites, the following information:
“Ipotesi ricostruttiva del Tempio di Traiano (J. Packer).” This image of the Tempio di Traiano (i.e. J. Packer), was originally published in the following work: “Fig. 15 – Conjectural reconstruction of the Temple of Divine Trajan and the temenos (J. Burge)”, facing page 112; see: J. E. Packer, with John Burge (2003), “TEMPLUM DIVI TRAIANI PARTHICI ET PLOTINAE: a debate with R. Meneghini.” JRA 16 (2003): 109-113.

Note: Just recently Prof. Packer was kind enough to allow me to republish online a copy of his following 2003 work [in PDF] (see below in section # IV) = James E. Packer, with John Burge (2003), “TEMPLUM DIVI TRAIANI PARTHICI ET PLOTINAE: a debate with Roberto Meneghini.” JRA 16, pp. 109-136 [now in PDF].

The revision of the Sovrintendenza Capitolina / “Il Foro di Traiano / Il tempio che non c’è.” (April 2019), might be based upon a series of recent articles published by Dr. Eugenio La Rocca (2018) & Dr. Roberto Meneghini (2018) on the Forum and Temple of Trajan. In the former article by Prof. La Rocca basically dismisses the interesting research and will argued conclusions for the ‘traditional’ location and architectural design of Temple of Trajan (similar to that of J. E. Packer [2003]), as then published in Dr. Baldassarri RM 122 (2016 ): 171-202 (as cited above) (5).

— ROMA ARCHEOLOGIA e RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA: Eugenio La Rocca, Il tempio dei divi Traiano e Plotina, l’arco partico e l’ingresso settentrionale al foro di Traiano: un riesame critico delle scoperte archeologiche. Veleia, No. 5 (2018): 57-107 [in PDF]. https://wp.me/pPRv6-4LR

Abstract: The temple of the divi Trajan and Plotina, the Parthian arch and the northern entrance to the Trajan forum: a critical review of archaeological discoveries. There is some reliable evidence from antique sources about the templum divi Traiani, thanks to which it is known that the templum was connected with the column of Trajan, although they do not clarify neither the morphology of the building nor its actual location. The recent excavations carried out in the foundations of the palazzo Valentini have not shed some light on the problem. The reproduction of the gigantic temple, with 8 × 10 (or 9) Egyptian granite columns of 50 feet height, is still based on the hypothetical reconstruction of the northern area of the Trajan forum drawn by Guglielmo Gatti [= based on his grandfather’s notes] and by Italo Gismondi. Something the results of new investigations do not actually allow it. Furthermore, the proposed solutions do not take into account the Parthian arch of Trajan, whose placement at the southern entrance of the Trajan forum, as suggested by Rodolfo Lanciani and Italo Gismondi, can no longer be sustained. It is likely that the arch, whose construction was started in May of 116 A. D. and it was still ongoing at the time of Trajan’s death on the 7th of August of 117 A. D., was instead the main entrance of the forum, that is, the northern one, in an area affected by the building interventions of Hadrian, whose entity and motivations, unfortunately, fly from us. The existence of the Parthian arc in the area partially occupied by the templum divi Traiani, at least according to the most recent proposals of reconstruction, compels to revise the Hadrian’s setting of the Trajan forum to the north of the columna cochlis.

— ROMA ARCHEOLOGIA e RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA: Lucrezia Ungaro, Traiano e la costruzione della sua immagine nel Foro | Trajan and the construction of his representation, Veleia, No. 5 (2018): 151-177 [in PDF]. https://wp.me/pPRv6-4LF

Abstract – The discovery of a new colossal portrait of Trajan occurred during the preparation of the exhibition «Trajan. Building the Empire, creating Europe», gave a renewed reading of the complex figurative program wanted by the emperor in his Forum. In the framework of his political, military and social action, the Forum is in fact the highest representation of his virtus imperatoria and of the maiestas populi romani. In particular, the portraits of the Traianus Father and of the so-called Agrippina / Marcia are reconsidered, in the light of a possible gallery dedicated to Trajan’s genetic family and his models, such as Julius Caesar. Equal attention is devoted to the distribution of sculptures and reliefs discovered in forensic spaces, to their hierarchical relationship in the huge space of the square. Finally, the proposal to recognize the porticus porphiretica in the three-segmented hall is reconsidered, examining preliminarily the known porphyry sculptures attributable to the Forum, and some fragments preserved in the deposits of the Museum of the Imperial Fora, thus getting new interest.

— ROMA ARCHEOLOGIA e RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA: Roberto Meneghini, L’Arco di Traiano partico nel Medioevo. Veleia, No. 5 (2018): 180-188 [in PDF]. https://wp.me/pPRv6-4LV

Abstract: The hypothesis, put forward by Eugenio La Rocca in this same volume, of the presence of the Arcus Parthicus of Trajan in the area immediately to N of the Trajan’s Column seems to be confirmed by the medieval tradition. In fact, in the area are cited from historical sources and archives, the Arch of the Foschi di Berta (in reality cannot be precisely positioned), and an Arcus Traiani Imperatoris that would be exactly in correspondence with the structures found in the recent excavations of the subsoil of Palazzo Valentini, now of the Provincia or the Città Metropolitana di Roma.

Likewise, Dr. R. Meneghini and Dr. L. Ungaro in published a series of conference presentations on the Forum and Temple of Trajan for the recent Traiano exhibit in Rome (2017-18), see:

— Roberto Meneghini, I Fori Imperiali / Il Foro di Traiano, pp. 1-20 [in PDF], in: Traiano: Costruire L’Impero, Creare L’Europa (Trajan: Constructing the Empire, Creating Europe), Mercati di Traiano, Museo dei Fori Imperiali, Rome (08/05/2018), 29 November 2017–16 September 2018. https://wp.me/pPRv6-4LF

— Lucrezia Ungaro, Dai frammenti alle ricomposizioni, dai depositi ai nuovi progetti di allestimento, pp. 1-76 [in PDF], Traiano: Costruire L’Impero, Creare L’Europa (Trajan: Constructing the Empire, Creating Europe), Mercati di Traiano, Museo dei Fori Imperiali, Rome (08/05/2018), 29 November 2017–16 September 2018. https://wp.me/pPRv6-4LF

For a review of the Traiano Exhibit (2017-18) and additional information, see:

Traiano: Costruire L’Impero, Creare L’Europa (Trajan: Constructing the Empire, Creating Europe), Mercati di Traiano, Museo dei Fori Imperiali, Rome, 29 November 2017–16 September 2018, curated by Claudio Parisi Presicce, Marina Milella, Simone Pastor, and Lucrezia Ungaro.

— ROMA ARCHEOLOGIA e RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA: Online Museum Review – Jeremy Hartnett, Marketing Trajan at the Museo dei Fori Imperiali. AJA 122.4 (Oct. 2018): 1-6 [in PDF], s.v, Roberto Meneghini | Lucrezia Ungaro (2018) [in PDF] & s.v., Prof Arch. P. Martellotti / Dott.ssa Arch. B. Baldrati (1999-2002).https://wp.me/pPRv6-4LF

IV). ROMA ARCHEOLOGIA e RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA: Update – The Forum and Temple of Trajan in Rome (2018-20): “L’evidenza archeologica ha dimostrato che il tempio c’è.” With New Comments & New Information Courtesy of Prof. James E. Packer (18 March 2020).

Rome, the Temple of Trajan: “…La scoperta non è sensazionale perché anche in passato si era parlato della possibile esistenza del Tempio di Traiano sotto Palazzo Valentini. La presenza della domus aveva fatto passare di moda l’ipotesi. L’evidenza archeologica ha dimostrato che il tempio c’è. Un impulso alla ricerca viene anche dallo scavo di Roberto Egidi (Soprintendenza statale) che messo in luce l’Athenaeum e che non è famoso come [Prof. Andrea] Carandini e [Prof. Eugenio] La Rocca! Peccato che verrà presto ricoperto. La situazione nel complesso frena gli entusiasmi.”

Comment Former Senior Director with the MIBACT and Italian archaeologist,
personal communication to M. G.Conde (08 December 2011) (6).

Since the fall 2019 and up-to the 30 January 2020, with having access now to Dr. Baldassarri’s recent work on the Temple of Trajan in Rome = the notice of the “LA TOPOGRAFIA DELL’AREA A NORD DEL FORO DI TRAIANO”, Rome Conference in Jan. 2020; her conference video presentation in Caen, France in mid-December 2019 and several of her recently published articles, notably the RM 122 (2016 ): 171-202.

I would like to offer a personal comment on Dr. Baldassarri’s recent work on the Temple of Trajan (2018-20), as noted in her RM 122 (2016 ): 171-202, she fundamentally completely ignores the invaluable previously work conducted on the Forum of Trajan by Prof. James E. Packer (2006, 2003, 2001 & 1997)? In her reconstruction of the history of the excavations and studies of the temple in the 19th, along with her new digital reconstruction of the temple itself. With the exception of the few architectural remains of the Temple brought to light underneath the Palazzo Valentini (2005 onwards), her work is fundamentally continuing the work and similar design plans of Prof. Packer’s earlier work on the Temple?

For the benefit of the non-Italian independent researchers, university students and scholars interested in the research and studies of the Forum and Temple of Trajan (2017-2020), after discussing with Prof. Packer the recent work of Dr. Baldassarri, Dr. La Rocca and Dr. Meneghini (2017-20), although he is currently engaged in his forthcoming book on the Theater of Pompey in Rome. He found the new research on the Temple of Trajan very interesting. As for his recent and past work in Forum of Trajan, see the following:

— James E. Packer [on Facebook] (15 May 2015). Personal comments in reference to: “I FORI IMPERIALI – “Un marmo sopra l’altro così rialzeremo le colonne del Foro di Traiano.” LA REPUBBLICA (15 May 2015). https://wp.me/pPRv6-2Y1

— James E. Packer (2013a), [Review of] “The Atlante: Roma antica revealed,” ANDREA CARANDINI (a cura di) con PAOLO CARAFA, ATLANTE DI ROMA ANTICA. BIOGRAFIA E RITRATTI DELLA CITTÀ (Mondadori Electa 2012). 2 vols. Pp. 1086, pls. XVII + 276 + 37 map
sections. ISBN 978-88-370-8510-9. EUR. 150.” JRA 26 (Nov., 2013), pp. 553-561.
(Abstract). https://doi.org/10.1017/S104775941300041X & http://wp.me/pPRv6-1S5

— James E. Packer (2013b), interview with J. E. Packer, in: T.E. Watts, “Rome Walk: Imperial Fora II-Trajan’s Forum and Market,” Rome: You-Tube (22 Nov. 2013), [1:00:13]. Interview with J. E. Packer, during a school group tour visit to the Forum of Trajan & the Forum of
Caesar. Rome: You-Tube (22 Nov. 2013), [1:00:13]. https://wp.me/pPRv6-2pu

— James E. Packer (2008a), “Italo Gismondi and Pierino Di Carlo: ―Virtualizing Imperial Rome for 20th-Century Italy.” AJA Online Review Article, 112.3 (July), pp. 1-6 [PDF]. AJA Online Edition.
https://www.ajaonline.org/online-review-article/254 & PDF = https://wp.me/pPRv6-2GB

Prof. James E. (2008b), “The Column of Trajan: the topographical and cultural contexts.” JRA 21, pp. 471-478 [PDF]. (Abstract) https://doi.org/10.1017/S104775940000478 & PDF = http://wp.me/pPRv6-1sv

— James E. Packer (2006), “Digitizing Roman Imperial architecture in the early 21st century: purposes, data, failures, and prospects,” pp. 309-320; in: L. Haselberger and J. Humphrey (eds)., Imaging Ancient Rome. Documentation – Visualization – Imagination. Proceedings of the Third Williams Symposium on Classical Architecture, 2004. JRA Supplementary Series 61 (2006). Index summary, JRA Supl. 61 (2006).

— James E. Packer, with John Burge (2003), “TEMPLUM DIVI TRAIANI PARTHICI ET PLOTINAE: a debate with Roberto Meneghini.” JRA 16, pp. 109-136 in PDF.

— James E. Packer (2001a), The Forum of Trajan in Rome: A Study of the Monuments in Brief. University of California Press (2001), pp. 1-235. (Preview & abstract in Google Books).
https://books.google.com/books?id=Tn7zf3ecm2wC&source=gbs_navlinks_s

— James E. Packer (2001b), Il Foro di Traiano a Roma: breve studio dei monumenti. Rome: Edizioni Quasar (2001), pp. 1-256. (Tradotto in italiano da Elisabetta Ercolini [translated into Italian by Elisabetta Ercolini]). (Abstract and summary) =
https://www.edizioniquasar.it/sku.php?id_libro=481&bef=1638&aft=-1

— James E. Packer (1997a), “Report from Rome: The Imperial Fora, a Retrospective.” AJA 101 (Apr., 1997), pp. 307-330 [PDF]. (Abstract) https://www.jstor.org/stable/506512 & PDF = https://wp.me/pPRv6-2oq

And for two important peer-review articles in English and Italian on Prof. Packer’s work on the Forum of Trajan (2001 & 1997), see:

— Tom Stevenson (2002), [Review of] “James E. Packer & John Burge, The Forum of Trajan in Rome: a Study of the Monuments in Brief (2001).” PRUDENTIA Vol 34, No 1, pp. 101-105 [PDF]. http://prudentia.auckland.ac.nz/index.php/prudentia/article/view/408/380

— Francesco Ferretti, (2001), “Foro di Traiano – Notiziario bibliografia”: J. E. Packer, Forum of Trajan Vol. I-III; R. Meneghini, F. di Traiano, RM 105 (1998); & E. La Rocca, F. di Traiano, RM 105 (1998); in: Notiziario bibliografico di Roma e Suburbio, 1997-2001. BCom Vol. 102 (2001), pp. 399-400 [PDF]. https://wp.me/pPRv6-4BX

Hope the readers will have found this brief notice of the Forum and Temple of Trajan useful.

Thank you Martin G. Conde
Washington DC, USA (20 March 2020).

A special thank you to Prof. James E. Packer and also Dr. Arch. Barbara Baldrati, Gianni De Dominicis & Alvaro Di Alvariis of Rome, Italy; all being very kind and contributing and sharing their important and invaluable work on Rome with me.

Their various works on Rome can be accessed via a search on the following website:
ROMA ARCHEOLOGIA E RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA 2010-20.
ROME – THE IMPERIAL FORA: SCHOLARLY RESEARCH & RELATED STUDIES.
https://rometheimperialfora19952010.wordpress.com/

Notes and Additional Information:

For a collection of research materials (in PDF’s and images) on the recent and past excavations and studies of the Forum, Temple and Markets of Trajan (1998-2020), see:

ROMA ARCHEOLOGICA & RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA. Il Foro di Traiano: Tempio di Traiano – Colonna di Traiano – Basilica Ulpia – scavi (1998-2020, 1989-1997, & 1928-33). | The Forum of Trajan: Temple of Trajan – Column of Trajan – Basilica Ulpia – excavations (1998-2020, 1989-1997, & 1928-33).

— Forum of Trajan =
https://www.flickr.com/photos/imperial_fora_of_rome/sets/72157600215755762/
— Temple of Trajan =
https://www.flickr.com/photos/imperial_fora_of_rome/sets/72157594585658935/

1). This brief summary on the Forum and Temple of Trajan (2018-20) is part of my forthcoming paper entitled:
ROMA ARCHEOLOGICA & RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA. The Temple of Divine Trajan in Rome, 2010-20. A Review of the Italian & International Studies – “L’evidenza archeologica ha dimostrato che il tempio c’è,” (2011). With Additional Contributions by Dr. Arch. Barbara Baldrati, Gianni De Dominicis & Alvaro Di Alvariis. Versus the Sovrintendenza Capitolina ai Beni Culturali – ‘Il tempio che non c’è,’ (2019); 1-25 [in PDF]. By Martin G. Conde, Independent Researcher. Washington DC, USA. (March 2020) mgconde@yahoo.com

2). For news of the restoration of the New Spanish School of History and Archaeology on the Via di Sant’Eufemia in Rome, see:
— Valencia, a 15 de abril de 2010, Cleop reformará la nueva sede de la Escuela española de Historia y Arqueología del Centro Superior de Investigaciones Científicas en Roma (2010) [in PDF].
http://www.cleop.es/media/pdf/ESCUELA%20DE%20HISTORIA%20Y%20ARQUEOLOGIA%20DEL%20CSIC%20EN%20ROMA.pdf

— Salvatore Nicoletti, “SCUOLA SPAGNOLA DI STORIA E ARCHEOLOGIA, ROMA INTEGRAZIONI SPAZIALI.” IOARCH 68, Jan. & Feb. (2017): 50-52 [in PDF].

3). List of the presenters at the ‘La topografia dell’area nord del Foro di Traiano’ – Conference (30/01/2020).

ORE 9,15 – INTRODUZIONE (Presiede Eugenio La Rocca)
ORE 9,30 – Antonio Pizzo, Massimo Vitti, Il Pomerio, i sepolcri e il Foro di Traiano.
ORE 10,15 – Francesca de Caprariis, Traiano tra Campidoglio e Campo Marzio
ORE 11,00/11,30 – PAUSA
ORE 11,30 – Rossella Rea, Gli auditoria di piazza Venezia.
ORE 12,15 – Paola Baldassarri, Il Tempio dei divi Traiano e Plotina e i suoi disiecta membra: novità dalle indagini a Palazzo Valentini.
ORE 13,00/15,00 PAUSA PRANZO (Presiede Domenico Palombi)
ORE 15,00 – Elisabetta Bianchi, Roberto Meneghini, Il Foro di Traiano a nord della Basilica Ulpia.
ORE 15,40 – Eugenio La Rocca. L’arco Partico di Traiano
ORE 16,20/16,50 PAUSA
ORE 16,50 – Claudio Parisi Presicce, Una nuova proposta per la localizzazione del Tempio di Plotinae del divo Traiano.
ORE 17,30 – Lucrezia Ungaro, Per un abaco delle sculture del Foro di Traiano
ORE 18,10 – Marina Milella, Resti marmorei di architetture di grandi dimensioni.

4). Rome, News of the Forum of Trajan and Via Alessandrina excavations (2019-20).
Since 2019, Dr. Arch. Federico Celletti working on the Via Alessandrina site (2017-20) has been kind enough to share with me his personal photographs of the ongoing excavations at the site (see references cited here below). While recently on 21 Feb. 2020, during an official visit by the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan in Rome, the administration of the City of Rome exhibited several of the architectural elements and decorations recently recovered from the Forum of Trajan excavations (see below). While the only news in English on the recent Forum of Trajan excavations is the “Dagli scavi ai Fori Imperiali riemerge la testa del dio Dioniso,” in: NOTES FROM ROME 2018-19; PBSR 87 (2019): 309-316 [in PDF] (see below).

— ROMA ARCHEOLOGIA e RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA: Foro di Traiano / Via Alessandrina – Gli scavi e le scoperte in corso. Foto: Dr. Arch. Federico Celletti / Facebook (09/03/2020). S.v., Virginia Raggi & President of the Republic of Azerbaijan (21/02/2020). https://wp.me/pPRv6-5cR

— ROMA ARCHEOLOGIA e RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA: Raggi riceve il presidente della Repubblica Azerbaigian – esposti i reperti archeologici provenienti dagli scavi archeologici dell’area di i Fori Imperiali & via Alessandrina. President of the Republic of Azerbaijan English & Italiano. https://wp.me/pPRv6-5cH

— ROMA ARCHEOLOGICA e RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA: “Dagli scavi ai Fori Imperiali riemerge la testa del dio Dioniso,” in: NOTES FROM ROME 2018-19; PBSR 87 (2019): 309-316. Foto: Dr. Arch. Federico Celletti / FACEBOOK, Rome (24 May 2019). https://wp.me/pPRv6-59q

5). ROMA ARCHEOLOGIA e RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA: ROME – “Trajan’s Temple, Column and Forum / Templum Divi Traiani” in: VR Back To The Past. CARLO CESTRA DIGITAL PRODUCTIONS 2010-19 (04/2019). For an alternative digital reconstruction / video of the ‘Templum Divi Traiani’ see the following work of Carlo Cestra, Senior CG Artist = ROME – Trajan’s forum: This is part of the project named VR Back To The Past, a collection of virtual reality tours I am working on. Here is the digital reconstruction of the north-western part of the Trajan’s Forum in Rome (beside the “Basilica Ulpia”) with the Trajan’s Column and the Temple. The Temple of Trajan (Templum Divi Traiani et Plotinae), Trajan’s Column area.
Fonte | source:
— Carlo Cestra, Senior CG Artist – Trajan’s forum (04/2019).
https://wp.me/pPRv6-4X0

6). Also see: ROMA ARCHEOLOGIA e RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA: Andrea Carandini, Paolo Carafa, & Fabio Cavallero, Il TEMPIO dei DIVI TRAIANO e PLOTINA ROMA ANTICA – ESCLUSIVO, ARCHEOLOGIA VIVA, Rivista: N. 149 / mese: Sett.-Ott. 2011, pp. 47-54 [PDF pp. 1-5].
https://wp.me/pPRv6-P4

7). For the earlier and recent discovery of the Trajanic inscriptions in the Forum of Trajan and the L’Athenaeum di Adriano, see:

— ROMA ARCHEOLOGIA e RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA: Rome, the Metro C Archaeological Surveys – the Piazza Madonna di Loreto, Sector (# S14/B1). The Discovery of New Inscriptions & Architectural Elements of the Temple of Trajan? (January 20th, 2011).
https://www.flickr.com/photos/imperial_fora_of_rome/5374055767

— ROMA ARCHEOLOGICA & RESTAURO ARCHITETTURA: Dott.ssa Paola Baldassarri – Nuovi dati per la ricostruzione del tempio di Traiano, (2015-16), Dr. Antonio Lopez Garcia, L’Athenaeum di Adriano (2015) & Marmo – Dedica ai divi Traiano e Plotina, MUSEI VATICANI (2017).
https://wp.me/pPRv6-4eO