Photo Highlight: Naming the streets of Rome

Many of Rome’s streets are named after famous historical figures – in the photo above you see Via Antonino Pio named after one of Rome’s most celebrated emperors: Antoninus Pius. Antoninus Pius was probably one of Rome’s most peaceful emperors and is most noted for having very little military experience and avoiding most things military.

During his twenty five year reign (the longest since Augustus), Antoninus Pius helped to have his predecessor, Hadrian, deified (something which the Roman Senate refused to do) and is considered one of the “Five Good Emperors” (the others being Trajan, Hadrian, Marcus Aurelius, and Commodus). Antoninus Pius’s 23 year reign was a quiet one militarily, although he spent much on improving the Roman Empire’s cultural and educational institutions: building temples, theaters and forums, bestowing awards on philosophers and educators, and improving and promoting the arts and sciences and even saving many Senators that Hadrian had wanted put to death. Soon after his death, a column (much like Trajan’s column) was erected in his honor (only the base survives today and is housed in the Vatican Museum).