“The old world stands serenely behind the new, as one mountain yonder towers behind another, more dim and distant. Rome imposes her story still upon this late generation.” (Henry David Thoreau, 1817–1862)
And such a story – from the greatest empire the world has ever empowered to some of the most brilliant artists ever created. In order to absorb the riches of Rome the traveler must arrive with some understanding of the ages and the archives available there. In a time when the sound-bite and the thumbnail clip are all the impatient person will endure, let this provide a brief baptism.