One of the oldest museum complex in the world, it is divided into two historical buildings on Capitoline Hill: Palazzo dei Conservatori and Palazzo Nuovo. Inside there are bronzes, marbles, bass-reliefs, mosaics, and paintings celebrating Rome's ancient glory.
The first nucleus of the Capitoline Museums was founded in 1471 when Pope Sixtus IV donated an important group of bronze sculptures, including the Capitoline Wolf and the Colossal head of Constantine. Over time the collection has been enriched not only with statues and relics found in archaeological excavations, but mainly with countless sculptures of pagan subjects moved by Pius V from the Vatican, where they were deemed unsuitable. The museums were first opened to the public in the 18th century, following the addition of a picture gallery. During the Fascist period, Latin inscriptions, coins, medals, and other examples of minor arts were also added.
The location of the museums is not accidental. The Capitoline Hill is a symbolic place for Rome, being both its ancient religious center and its political heart from the Middle Ages onwards. To celebrate this long tradition, the complex has been deeply renovated to extend its exhibitions and reorganize the artworks that since the 15th century have been displaying Rome's past greatness.
- Capitoline Wolf
- Colossal head of Constantine
- Gilded bronze statue of Hercules
- Capitoline Brutus
- Bernini, Bust of Medusa, 1648
- Caravaggio, The Fortune Teller, 1595
- Rubens, Romulus and Remus, 1612
- Guido Reni, Saint Sebastian, 1616