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The Tabularium


The only relics still extant of the ancient Capitol of Rome are the ruins of the Tabularium, erected B.C. 78, by the consul Q. Lutatius Catulus for the reception of the state archives. The modern Capitol covers a part of it. The Tarpeian Rock, from which the condemned used to be thrown by the ancient Romans, is close by this edifice, if the Rupe Tarpeia still pointed out is the veritable one.

Adjoining the Tabularium is the Schola Xantha, "With the Colonnade of the Twelve Gods, whose images Vettius Agorius Praetextatus, the praefectus urbi, and one of the principal champions of expiring paganism, erected here in A.D. 367." The Twelve Gods stand in base relief, on a beautiful vase in the corridor of the Capitoline Museum, in the following order: Jupiter, Juno, Minerva, Hercules, Apollo, Diana, Mars, Venus, Vesta, Mercury, Neptune and Vulcan. It is a remarkable coincidence(?), that there are: First, Twelve Lunations in a year; Second, Twelve Months in a year; Third, Twelve Constellations in the heavens; Fourth, Twelve Gods in the ancient mythology; Fifth, Twelve Labors of Hercules; Sixth, see Law of the Twelve tables(?), Encyclopaedia Britannica on Burying; Seventh, Twelve Sons of Jacob; Eighth, Twelve Tribes of Israel; Ninth, Twelve Apostles of Christ; Tenth, Twelve Virtues and Twelve Vices represented in base reliefs in Notre Dame, Paris; Eleventh, Twelve Colossal statues facing the tomb of Napoleon I.; and Twelfth, Twelve units in a dozen.

It is strange enough that there are a dozen dozen of these curious dozens!

Did Pythagoras not also have twelve spheres to make his sphere-music?

Between the Tabularium and the Forum, about 150 feet southeast from the former, and near the Arch of Severus, are the remains of the Rostra.