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Images of Rome The Rodolfo Lanciani Digital Archive

The Collection

Drawings, prints and photographs were divided by Lanciani (and later by INASA) in individual folders based on type (churches, roman baths, etc.) or site (Colosseum, Pantheon, etc.). This website preserves those divisions and offers a digitized version of 4,000 selected images, mostly portraying locations inside the Aurelian Walls.

The folders that have been completely or partly digitized are: Roma XI.1 (Colosseum), Roma XI.2 (Agostino Penna), Roma XI.3 (Via Sacra), Roma XI.4 (Foro Romano), Roma XI.5 (Fori), Roma XI.6 (Campidoglio), Roma XI.7 (Palatino), Roma XI.8 (Tevere), Roma XI.9 (Mura), Roma XI.10 (Rossini – Archi Trionfali), Roma XI.11 (Colonne, Obelischi, Piazze), Roma XI.12 (Fontane, Acquedotti), Roma XI.18 (Castel S. Angelo), Roma XI.19 (Grandi Panorami), Roma XI.20 (Regiones), Roma XI.21 (Israel Sylvestre), Roma XI.22 (Pantheon, Thermae Agrippae), Roma XI.23 (Piazza Navona), Roma XI.25 (Picturae Cryptarum), Roma XI.36 (Campagna Romana), Roma XI.38, 39, 40 (Chiese), Roma XI.41 (Vaticano), Roma XI.43 (Laterano), Roma XI.46 (S. Maria Maggiore), Roma XI.48 (Villa Borghese), Roma XI.50 (Ville), Roma XI.51,52 (Palazzi), Roma XI.53 (Quirinale), Roma XI.54 (Vaticano - interno), Roma XI.60 (Rossini), Roma XI.61 (Panini), Roma XI.62 (Mura Serviane, Piramide), Roma XI.100 (Valadier). To see the images according to their original placement in Lanciani’s folders, go to the explore page.

You can navigate the collection in other ways. By using the facets shown in the homepage sidebar, you may limit a search to specific metadata. By searching the box on the top right of every page, you can find desired topics, sites, or names. Or you can explore one of our thematic sections clicking on the links on the left of this page.


The Digital Collection

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Of the circa 15,000 prints, drawings and photographs in the collection, our team chose and digitized 4,000. The vast majority (almost two thirds) of the selected images consisted of engravings (mainly copper engravings) or other forms of prints (steel engravings, etchings, lithographs, zincographs etc.). Nearly 30% of the total consisted of handmade drawings while only 5% of the total were photographs. There is a great variety of techniques used in the handmade drawings, and sometimes these techniques are combined together: pencil, ink, pen and ink, pencil pen and ink, watercolored pen and ink, red chalk, sepia, aquatint, etc. The user can browse the collection in this website by media, either entering a specific term (even in Italian, for example acquatinta) in the search box on top of each page or going back to the home page and clicking on the 'Medium' facet. Regarding the dates, more than half of the digitized images belong not surprisingly to the XIX century, when Lanciani was at the height of his career. Among the most represented authors there are some of the most important artists and printers, such as Vasi, Rossini, Valadier and Piranesi. The charts in this page (to see bigger versions of the images click here) summarize some of these statistics.

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