Music: Opera at the Baths

Sixteen hundred years ago no proper Roman's day was complete without a visit to the public baths, and a favorite was the great new one built by Emperor Caracalla below the Aventine Hill. Tunics and togas checked, the patrons could idle away hours beside the marble pools, move leisurely from the steamy heat of the calidarium to the cool waters of the frigidarium, let slaves massage them with perfumed oils while they pondered politics, poetry and philosophy.

For the past two months, as they have each summer since the war, modern Romans and visitors...

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