CAMPO CESTIO – Rome’s ‘English cemetery’
Campo Cestio is an interesting and beautiful place in Rome with a fairly bizzarre history and some very fine scupture. It’s also very little-known, hardly visited and a generally quiet and relaxing place full of green and shade.
Irreversible damage in Rome’s dying cemetery. Campo Cestio, Rome.
Here a tree is growing right out of a very young man’s tomb. Campo Cestio, Rome.
One end of the cemetery has wide open spaces with shady lawns and a pyramid to boot! In the background, Rome’s Porta san Paolo. Campo Cestio, Rome.
Pilgrimage site: William Shelley’s tomb. Campo Cestio, Rome.
On the inside looking out. Visitor shooting the Piramide cestia. Campo Cestio, Rome.
The ivy is trimmed back only as little as is necessary, and many of the tombstones are leaning one way or another. Campo Cestio, Rome.
An incredibly detailed bas-relief. Just beyond, a low wall, a quiet street and some low-rise houses. Note the old-school tv antennas. Campo Cestio, Rome.
Young British Devereux Plantagenet cockburn, who died in Rome on this very day (may 3rd) of 1850 at only 21 years of age. Campo Cestio, Rome.
The tomb of Mister Piccoli, born New York, died Rome. Campo Cestio, Rome.
This one is heart-wrenching. Not only is it truly beautiful, it was William Wetmore Story’s last sculpture. For the tomb of his wife, Emelyn. Now they rest together. Campo Cestio, Rome.
Could have sworne i heard a little growl when i got too close to the tomb for the picture. Campo Cestio, Rome.
This one seemed to be levitating. Campo Cestio, Rome.
One side of the Campo Cestio is constituted by Rome’s ancient defensive walls, a real, massive fortification. Campo Cestio, Rome.
At first i thought this gentleman had been sculpted wart and all. Then i realized he had a snail on his forehead. Campo Cestio, Rome.
Take my hand, we’ll go together. Campo Cestio, Rome.
Russian Mr Sharoff’s favorite play was ‘The Three Sisters’ by Anton Chekhov. When he passed away, his students offered him this sculpture on the theme, placed atop his tomb. Campo Cestio, Rome.
I didn’t read this child’s story, but children and cemeteries almost always make a bad, sad, devastating mix. Campo Cestio, Rome.
This little guy, one of four, shows noticeable signs of corrosion due to atmospheric agents. Campo Cestio, Rome.
This little angel had just fallen asleep at the foot of the tomb of a child born in Austria and died in Rome ten short years later. Yes, i cried. Campo Cestio, Rome.
This photo essay is from what Romans call the ‘English Cemetery’. The real name is Cimitero Acattolico di Campo Cestio, and it is a cemetery built just outside Rome’s ancient walls especially to house foreigners and Italians who were not catholic, and could therefore not be buried inside Rome, in hallowed ground. There are tombs in Greek script, Arabic, Russian, as well as in every European language.
The place is privately owned and struggling to maintain the vast grounds. Falling limbs from the huge trees have inflicted irreversible damage to some of the tombs, and acid rains are slowly eating away at others. In some places, trees grow right out of tombs.
to read some accurate information about campo cestio, you can visit this website in italian and english.
to watch a well made video documenting the history and the current state of affairs at campo cestio (15minutes) in english
Photographs taken on may 2nd, 2012