Maccari-Cicero

Representation of a sitting of the Roman Senate: Cicero attacks Catiline, from a 19th century fresco in Palazzo Madama, Rome, house of the Italian Senate. It is worth noting that idealistic medieval and subsequent artistic depictions of the forum in session are almost uniformly inaccurate. Illustrations commonly show the senators arranged in a semicircle around an open space where orators were deemed to stand; in reality the structure of the existing Curia Julia building, which dates in its current form from the Emperor Diocletian, shows that the senators sat in straight and parallel lines on either side of the interior of the building. In current media depictions in film this is shown correctly in The Fall of the Roman Empire, and incorrectly in, for example, Spartacus.

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