Who Was The City Of Rome Named After?

The Piazza Navona in Rome.
The Piazza Navona in Rome.

The city of Rome is the capital of Italy and of the Lazio Region. It is the most populated commune in Italy and the fourth-most populated city in the EU with a population of approximately 2.9 million people. Rome is situated in the central-western regions of the Italian peninsula, along the Tiber River. Inside the city is an independent country known as the Vatican, the seat of the Catholic Pope. Rome is one of the most visited cities in the world because of its rich history and the several tourist attraction sites with some of the sites listed by UNESCO as World Heritage Sites.

Who Founded Rome?

The history of Rome spans about 28 centuries. According to the Roman mythology, Rome was founded in 753 BCE by the twins, Romulus and Remus, who were cared for by the she-wolf. The two boys were believed to be sons of Rhea Silvia and either Hercules or Mars and were thrown away immediately after they were born because a certain prophecy had been given that they would dethrone their uncle, Amulius, who himself had dethroned their grandfather Numitor. A shepherd found them while they were under the care of the she-wolf and cared for them as his own children. When they had grown, they dethroned and killed their uncle Amulius and restored their grandfather Numitor. Romulus and Remus decided to build a city. However, the two quarreled with Romulus killing his brother.

Another legend has it that a Trojan refugee named Aeneas escaped to Italy and established the line of Rome through one of his offspring called Lulus. Yet another legend has it that Rome was founded by Romos who was a son of Odysseus and Circe.

Naming Of Rome

The legends on the founding of Rome are closely related to its naming. When Romulus and Remus founded the city, the two argued on who should rule (although some sources say that the argument was on where the city should be). In the process of their argument, Romulus killed his brother and named the city after himself.

The Aeneas’ legend states that Rome was named after Roma, who was also a Trojan refugee alongside Aeneas and the other survivors. When the survivors landed at the bank of Tiber River, Roma and a group of other women objected when the men wanted to move further, burning the Trojan ship in the process. The survivors got stranded at this place which would later be named Rome.

Other theories suggest that the city was named after Rumon, the ancient name of the Tiber River on whose bank a small trading center existed.

Early Rome

Early Rome was a small trading center or town at the bank of Tiber River. Through commerce, Rome grew in strength and size within a short time. Its location provided an easily navigable waterway for merchants. Several kings ruled the city including Romulus and Tarquin. The Greek culture which found its way to Rome provided the Romans with a platform on which they built their own culture. Although trade was an important economic activity in Rome, it was wars that made it more powerful in the ancient world.


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