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Villa Jovis and the emperor Tiberius

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Villa Jovis is situated in the very northeast of the Capri island atop Monte Tiberio, 334m of elevation and is the second-highest peak of Capri after Monte Solaro. Find water was difficult where the villa was built, and Roman engineers constructed an intricate system for take rainwater from the roofs and a large cistern for give fresh water to the palace. Access to the Villa is only possible on foot, after an uphill walk of about two kilometres from Capri town. The original structure of this villa dates back to Augustus ages and was restructured for request of Tiberius, who choose the island as his house for the last years of his life from 27-37 A.D. from where he continued to rule the Empire. Tiberius, who was born in 42 B.C., reached power late in life after alternating political and military ordeals which gave him two victories but also a period of exile. Tiberius had been adopted by Augustus and succedeed him in 14 A.D. After the first decade of rule, and the death of his adopted son Germanico and his young son Druso Cesare, he moved his imperial headquarters to Capri. This led to particularly malevolent rumours by his opponents in Roman circles, regarding his stay in Capri island. Apparently the main motivations for Tiberius’s move from Rome to Capri were his wariness of the political manoeuvring in Rome and a regular fear of assassination. In fact the villa is situated at a very wild spot on the island and Tiberius’s quarters in the north and east of the palatial villa were particularly difficult to reach and heavily guarded. Tiberius died in Miseno on a return trip to Rome. Villa Jovis continues to be a imperial residence until the 2nd century A.D. Was modified in medieval times, when was built a chapel in honour of St.Christopher and St.Leonard, and later transformed to today’s St.Maria del Soccorso.



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