The Roman villa where Prince Agrippa Postumo was exiled

The ruins of the Roman building of the pre imperial Villa Agrippa are opposite the beach of Cala Giovanna; here, between 7 and 14 AD, Prince Agrippa Postumo was exiled. He was Emperor Augusto's nephew, and had been adopted by him to be his successor. His step mother, Livia, accused him of being both dissolute and a homosexual, with the sole aim of helping her son Tiberio (born from her previous marriage with Claudio Nerone) become successor. So Agrippa was sent away from Rome and exiled on the Island of Pianosa, where he was later murdered, probably by one of Tiberio's rivals.

The villa is of extreme historical-archaeological value, and was bought back to life by Gaetano Chierici in the second half of the nineteenth century. It consisted of a theatre, rooms with thermal and marine water (Bagni di Agrippa) and the royal palace, probably nearer the interior pat of the building. The floors were in black and white mosaic, the walls were in marble, with decorations of mythological sea animals on them.

Chierici collected the items both from the villa and the beach that are now on show in Reggio Emilia, and are part of the Archaeological Collection of the Civic Museums: tiny pieces of sealed earth from Arezzo, late Italic, south Gallic and from Africa; oil lamps, a "fritillus" (used for throwing dice); pieces of amphoras and bricks with seals on them; late antique and modern Roman coins; a bronze valve that was probably part of the plumbing of the peristyle in the villa.

Just as the General Management of the Unesco Forum has declared, the original building was very different. Today great part of the building, probably where the prince loved relaxing - the thermal waters and the theatre - is near the sea. According to the Greek historian Dione Cassio (II-III centuries), the Roman nobleman loved fishing and playing at imitating Neptune.

You can visit the small theatre, the thermal waters, a peristyle where there is a large, rectangular swimming pool, a delegation room with an apse at the back, an exedra (a semi circular terrace facing the sea) and two nymphaeums.

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