17.2616 The Navel of the World
Roman Empire Roman Empire
Home Page
Roman Empire
Childrens Section
Children's Section

The Navel of the World
Umbilicus Urbis Romae

umbilicus-01.jpg - 49222 Bytes

Next to the Arch of Severus stood a column which was called 'umbilicus urbis romae', which although it means 'the navel of the city of Rome' is perhaps better translated as 'the navel of the world'.
It was no doubt of of Rome's strongest symbols of empire. On it stood the distances in miles to all the major cities of the empire, from Athen to Carthage and Alexandria to Londinium, they would all be named here.
Today however, all that remains is the bricks of the base of this once potent symbol of Roman power.