A new interactive 3D reconstruction of ancient Rome has been launched allowing viewers the opportunity to virtually transport themselves back in time and explore the capital of the Roman Empire as it was during its heyday.
Rome Reborn: Flight over Ancient Rome is presented by Flyover Zone, an educational technology company, and offers viewers a fantastic view of ancient Rome and its famed monuments, including the Colosseum, Pantheon, Baths of Caracalla, and the Roman Forum, as they may have appeared in A.D. 320. During this time, Rome was one of the most populated cities in Europe, with 1 million residents and featuring 7,000 buildings in an area of over 5.3 square miles.
The new virtual version comes from digital archaeologist Bernard Frischer, with the Luddy School of Informatics, Computing, and Engineering at Indiana University Bloomington. Frischer created the concept in 1974 while he was the Rome Prize Fellow in Classics at the American Academy in Rome. He visited the Museum of Roman Civilization and saw a physical model of ancient Rome, and ultimately knew he could make a better, computerized version.
Bernard Frischer said Yorescape Rome Reborn 4.0 is “the culmination of more than twenty-seven years of collaborative international work using digital tools to research cultural history and bring it to life. By making the Rome model available through the virtual tour called Flight over Ancient Rome, we hope to make it easy and enjoyable for people to learn about the ancient world city and its cultural heritage. Teachers can use this and other tours on Yorescape to take their students on virtual field trips to the cultures they are studying. Armchair travelers can explore great heritage sites without having to leave home. Yorescape can help travelers to prepare for a trip to Rome, get more out of a trip by using it once they have arrived, and keep their memories alive once they return home. Our goal is not to replace real-world tourism but to enhance it.”
Like the earlier versions, Rome Reborn 4.0 presents the city as it might have appeared at the peak of its development in the year 320 CE, just before the capital was moved to Constantinople. Scholars believe that the population was about one million, making Rome by far the most populous city in Europe prior to the nineteenth century. Fourth century Romans lived and worked in approximately 7,000 buildings spread over 13.6 square kilometers (5.3 square miles) within the late-antique Aurelian Walls, all of which is brought into dynamic visual splendor in Rome Reborn: Flight Over Ancient Rome.
The urban reconstruction of ancient Rome is as scientifically accurate as the fragmentary surviving evidence allows. As new discoveries and new interpretations of the evidence appear, the Flyover Zone team continually modifies Rome Reborn to ensure that it offers a reliable and complete visualization of the city.
Due to the development of advanced computer graphics, Rome Reborn made sense for an updated version in 2023, which made it possible to achieve a higher degree of photorealism. In addition, recent archaeological discoveries enabled the Flyover team to enrich the urban database with new and updated recreations of essential monuments in the city that had yet to be absent from earlier versions. Examples include the Baths of Caracalla, the temples on the Capitoline Hill, and the structures in the theater district like the Stadium of Domitian (modern-day Piazza Navona) and the theaters of Balbus, Marcellus, and Pompey the Great.
Rome Reborn: Flight over Ancient Rome version 4.0 is currently available here. Flyover Zone offers 13 other virtual tours on Yorescape.com, including the Acropolis in Athens and the Tomb of Ramesses VI in Egypt.