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The original structure of the fortress of "Castel Sant'Angelo" in Rome, together with the Elio bridge in front of it, nowadays known as "Ponte Sant'Angelo", are built by the Architect Demetriano between 117 and 138 after Christ, as a mausoleum for the family of the Imperator Adriano.

The edifice, with its square plan of roughly 90 metres of length on the side, had a basement 14 metres high on which was standing a cylindrical body having a diameter of more or less 64 metres and a height of 21 metres, at the summit, on a hillock, was dressed up the statue of the Imperator, personification of the God Sun, while leading a quadriga.

In 271 after Christ, however, the structure, with the addiction of the defensive bastions, was transformed in outpost of the Aurelius walls on the right shore of the Tevere.

In 1277 after Christ, Castel Sant'Angelo becomes the ownership of the State of the Church that determines the complete transformation into fortress-jail and builds the connection to the Vatican Buildings through the fortified passageway of the "passetto".
The name of Castel Sant'Angelo comes from a miraculous apparition during the plague of 590 after Christ; according to tradition, Pope Gregorio Magno, praying in procession, would have had the vision of an angel who was casing the sword and he would have interpreted this gesture as the announcement of the end of the pestilence in the area.

In memory of the event, at the summit of the Adrian Mole, was placed a wood statue, afterwards substituted by a few versions in marble and by one in bronze melted in 1527 after Christ to forge guns; the actual statue, the sixth one, is the work of the artist Werschaffelt and is dating back to 1753 after Christ.

The inside of the edifice, which can nowadays be visited thanks to the relative National Museum of Castel Sant'Angelo, is made of five floors and includes, in addition to numerous rooms of Roman era, also diverse rooms with frescoes of Renaissance project. (source : www.romaviva.com). Enjoy !!

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