The Triumphal Arch was introduced by the Romans as a monument to celebrate military victory. The first arches were simple arches with one passage and sometimes adorned by reliefs and attached columns. The later arches became more elaborate, both in decoration and form, culminating in the splendidly decorated Arch of Septimius Severus and Arch of Constantine, both in Rome.
Smaller arches, sometimes more like large monumental doorways, could also be used to honour or commemorate persons or events that were not connected to warfare, for example to express gratitude towards the emperor, as in the Arco degli Argentari in Rome.
Examples of Triumphal Arches
- Arch of Augustus, Forum Romanum, Rome
- Arch of Gaius and Lucius, Forum Romanum, Rome (lost)
- Arch of Tiberius, Forum Romanum, Rome (lost)
- Arch of Titus, Forum Romanum, Rome
- Arch of Septimius Severus, Forum Romanum, Rome
- Arch of Constantine, Rome