Rome’s birthday celebrations for Natale di Roma include historical re-enactments including a costumed parade and gladiator fights.
Rome celebrates its 2,772nd birthday on 21 April which this year coincides with Easter Sunday festivities. Known as Natale di Roma, the annual birthday celebration is based on the legendary founding of Rome by Romulus in 753 BC.
Events are in the Circus Maximus and include the trench-digging ritual, which recalls the founding of ancient Roman towns when a trench or mundus was dug and offerings thrown into it for the gods to watch over the inhabitants.
The Circus Maximus also hosts historical re-enactments including gladiator fights.
The main event each year however is a costumed parade, featuring more than 2,000 gladiators, senators, vestal virgins and priestesses.
The pageant is organised by the Gruppo Storico Romano, an historical dramatic society which, has brought history to life by re-enacting battles, historic events, and displays of ancient theatre and dance in the city centre.