This section aims to illustrate the territorial, ecclesiastical, and social space of the Via Flaminia, as well as the religious presence there at the dawn of the seventeenth century.
Via Flaminia Overview
This first map illustrates the pathway of the Via Flaminia in a “timeless” way. The goal of this map is to reconstruct the curves of the Roman Via Flaminia as faithfully as possible, at least the part that was still in use in the seventeenth century. In order to do this, a few principles were followed:
1 – The route had to join the notable towns on the Via Flaminia. The Via Flaminia starts in Piazza del Popolo in Rome and ends in Rimini, passing under the Arch of Augustus. In the meantime, it passes through important cities that have existed since ancient times such as Narni, Terni, Spoleto, Foligno, Nocera, and Fano.
2 – The Via Flaminia illustrated here follows modern roads. Along the SS3, which currently crosses Umbria and connects Rome to Fano, known as the Via Flaminia Nuova, there is the Via Flaminia vecchia/antica (old/ancient), This route is discontinuous, with names that vary according to regions and cities. Similarly, at the entrance and exit of the cities, the main road – the one that used to be the Via Flaminia – is often named after its direction: for example, in Nocera, the northbound Via Flaminia is called the Via Fano, while in Gualdo Tadino, the southbound Via Flaminia is called the Via Roma.
3 – The Adriatic Via Flaminia has been superimposed on the present Via Adriatica, the road that links Fano to Rimini. This choice is supported by the fact that the Adriatica between Riccione and Rimini is still called Via Flaminia today. On the other hand, two factors must be taken into account. First, the sea has receded since the seventeenth century, freeing up several meters of beach and the area where the railway line now runs. In ancient times, the water practically reached the walls of the town of Fano! Then, the Via Flaminia had to pass relatively close to the sea; a mountainous landscape emerged almost directly off the coast, at the top of which castles are perched, such as Gradara. The commercial and political traffic of the Adriatic Via Flaminia had no reason to travel over this rough and mountainous landscape, whereas the plains and seaside were faster.
4 – When it was difficult to determine the exact route of the Via Flaminia, the most natural route was favored: one that follows the landscape with its mountains and watercourses, and above all one that takes into account the land ownership. Straight roads are the result of land seizures only possible in Unitary Italy.
Various points of interest have been added to this map of the Via Flaminia, including the dioceses (in red), the castles and towns (in blue, with the name of the diocese to which they belong visible when one clicks on the dot), and Casteldurante (in purple), the last territory not yet politically united to the Papal States by the beginning of the seventeenth century. Casteldurante was incorporated in 1631, under Urban VIII, who then named the town Urbania.
The map is accessible at this link: