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Protestant Cemetery in Rome

When in Rome, visit and shoot at the Protestant Cemetery, one of our favorite places to snap around even if it's not Halloween. Read some historical facts and tips for when you end up here later in life--or the next!

“There isnt another cemetery in the world that inspire such a sense of infinite peace, hope and faith. In solemn peace sleep the last sleep together men of every race and country of each language and age. Though many rest here in the shadow of the Pyramid of Caius Cestius, among cypress pine, myrtle and laurel, wild roses and camellias, all have enjoyed the happiness of living more or less time in the Eternal City.”

Photo by giorgia_necci

The Protestant Cemetery, aka English Cemetery, in Rome is located in Testaccio, at the foot of the Cestius’s Pyramid. Many tombs of famous personalities can be found here, like John Keats, Persey Shelley, and Antonio Gramsci. Buried in this cemetery are the Orthodox, Protestants, and suicidals because the Catholic Church forbade “sinners” on Catholic-consecrated ground.

The cemetery was officially opened in October 1821 due to the growing number of foreign visitors, mostly students, writers and artists, that in the age of Romanticism and Neoclassicism were going to Rome with a consequent increase of non-Catholics who died in the city, like happened to English poet John Keats.

We can define this cemetery a sort of “artificial paradise” for the living. The vast space is surrounded by trees and a few memorials and benches where one can linger, relax, and be carried away by artistic aspirations, along with cats that wander undisturbed.

written by giorgia_necci and translated by giorgia_necci

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The original version of this article is written in: Italiano.