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Triumphal arch

From Academic Kids

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Arc de Triomphe, Paris

A triumphal arch is a structure in the shape of a monumental gate, usually built to celebrate a victory in war. This tradition dates back to Ancient Rome and the tradition of the Roman triumphs granted by the Senate. A number of arches from the city's imperial era can still be seen in modern Rome.

The Arches of Rome were splendid monuments of triumph, erected in honour of her illustrious generals. They were at first very simple symbolic temporary gateways to the city, being built of brick or hewn stone with a semicircular arched heading and festively hung with trophies of captured arms. Vitruvius, the Roman writer on architecture, does not mention triumphal arches, for they were not yet a major consideration in his day, the 1st century BCE.

About the earliest surviving triumphal arch is the unpretentious Arch of Augustus at Rimini [1] (http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/E/Gazetteer/Places/Europe/Italy/Emilia-Romagna/Rimini/Rimini/Rimini/Roman/Arcus_Augusti/home.html). Afterwards more magnificent arches were built of the finest marble with a large, arched gate in the middle, and sometimes two smaller ones on each side, adorned with columns and bas-reliefs and crowned with statues, often a quadrigia. In the vault of the middle gate, hung winged figures of victory, bearing crowns in their hands, which, when let down, they placed on the victor's head, when he passed in triumph.

By the 2nd century, arches were erected that did not specifically commemorate victories, such as the surviving triumphal arch at Ancona, erected by a grateful city to commemorate Trajan's improvements to the harbor.

Some triumphal arches are made of stone and intended to be permanent. Of twenty-one arches in Rome mentioned in documents, five survive (see list below).

Temporary triumphal arches are still constructed, intended to be used for a celebratory parade or ceremony and then be dismantled afterwards.

Temporary triumphal arch commemorating election of Emilio Aguinaldo as President of the Philippines, 1899
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Temporary triumphal arch commemorating election of Emilio Aguinaldo as President of the Philippines, 1899
Contents

See also

External link

  • Lacus Curtius website: (http://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/E/Roman/Texts/secondary/SMIGRA*/Arcus_Triumphalis.html) "Triumphal arch" from William Smith, A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities, John Murray, London, 1875

List of triumphal arches

Permanent monumental triumphal arches include:

Austria

Belgium

Croatia

Marble Arch, London
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Marble Arch, London

England

France

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The triumphal arch of Glanum

Germany

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Greece

India

Iraq

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The Arch of Constantine, Rome

Italy

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The Soldiers and Sailors Arch at Grand Army Plaza, Brooklyn, New York

Korea

Libya

Romania

Russia

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Puerta de Alcal is a triumphal arch forming a monumental gateway to Madrid

Spain

Syria

Turkey

The Washington Square Arch, New York City
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The Washington Square Arch, New York City

Ukraine

United States

de:Triumphbogen fr:Arc de triomphe it:Arco trionfale ja:凱旋門 pl:Łuk triumfalny sv:Triumfbge zh:凯旋门

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