The tour of Palazzo Altemps, which take his name from the cardinal Marco Sittico Altemps, will take the visitors to the exhibition of antiquarian collections of the National Roman Museum statuary. In fact, during the Palazzo Altemps and National Roman Museum tour, we will admire the Greek and Roman statues, which were part of the private collections of noble Roman families of the 16th and 17th centuries. The collection of the Boncompagni family, which is also included in the itinerary of the tour, is the most conspicuous nucleus, and is completed with sculptures from the collections of the Mattei, Del Drago and Altemps.
Palazzo Altemps tour is designed in a path covering both floors of the building, around a beautiful courtyard. During the visit on the ground floor, one of the first masterpieces we will meet is the beautiful portrait of Julia, daughter of Titus, and following that the remarkable Athena, which Algardi restored, and the Athena Parthenos, in a sized down copy of the colossal masterpiece of Phidias, or the group of Dionysos and satyr, a copy of a Hellenistic original. Before going up the stairs to the main floor, we’ll have an ample view across the main courtyard, completed by Martino Longhi, who also planned the innovative altana, observable outside from Piazza St. Apollinare.
In the courtyard fountain of Palazzo Altemps, we will identify the marms of the Cardinals, on which stands an ibex rampant, that we find all along the way on the main floor. Here, the tour to Palazzo Altemps continues with the Egyptian collection. In the hall of Moses, the tour continues with the famous Ludovisi Throne, an original piece from Magna-grecia of the 5th century. B.C., depictig the birth of Aphrodite. Once through the bedroom and the Studiolo of the cardinal, we shall overlook the courtyard from the Painted Loggia with its leafy pergola, before going into the Sala delle Feste, dominated by the Ludovisi sarcophagus, of the 3rd century AD.
We end the tour at the Palazzo Altemps and the National Roman Museum in the Church of San Aniceto: built by Giovanni Angelo Altemps in 1617 in order to house the remains of the saint. Looking back, before resuming the staircase, will not forget the collection of tenor Evan Gorga, an compulsive antiquarian of the 19th century, with its thousands of artifacts, repeated serially.