The medieval hamlet of Malborghetto stands at the old intersection of the Roman roads known as the Via Flaminia and the Via Veientana, 19 kilometers (12 miles) north of Rome. Some of the town’s architecture is made up of older Roman structures that were reused, but medieval and later structures were built around an extraordinary piece: a forgotten triumphal arch.
Located at the intersection of two roads, the Arch of Malborghetto is a quadrifons arch, or an arch that rests on four pylons with four openings, not unlike the Arch of Janus in the Forum Boarium in Rome. Most of its exterior marble coating vanished over the centuries, so what we see today is the plain but resistant brick structure, topped by a flat-roof attic and crowned by an entablature. The arch underwent a number of different uses and reconstructions from the 11th century onwards: a church, a fortification by the name of Hamlet of Saint Nicholas of the Arch of the Virgin, a private residence for an an apothecary from Milan, a Papal post office on the Via Flaminia in the 1700s, a farmhouse, and now an archaeological site and museum.
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