The Site Where Julius Caesar Was Killed Will Soon Be Open To Tourists

The site of Julius Caesar’s death will soon be open to visitors thanks to funding from fashion giant Bulgari. Rome’s mayor, Virginia Raggi, made the announcement on Twitter and Facebook last week.

The historic location stands near a bustling Rome bus stop, where commuters and tourists can peer at the ruins from behind a fence. The ruins include what was once a theater, which has long been thought of as the site of the Roman ruler’s death. Spanish researchers said they pinpointed the suspected location of his demise in 2012.

For those a little fuzzy on their Roman history, Julius Caesar was a Roman leader who was famously assassinated in 44 B.C. He was also the subject of a Shakespeare play that dramatized and immortalized his death. (If the words “Et tu, Brute?” ring a bell, it’s because they were the last words Julius Caesar uttered in Shakespeare’s classic as he was stabbed.)

The $1.1 million improvement and access project envisions walkways, a museum space and bathrooms for visitors. The site has been closed since 2005 and is scheduled to reopen in 2021. Raggi called the site “among the richest in history of our city,” which is no small statement considering that city is Rome.

While tourists will likely flock to the site once it is reopened, it receives attention now for a rather less historic but arguably important function: It houses a refuge for cats. But don’t worry, the cats will be OK. A volunteer for the refuge reassured the feline friends’ Facebook group.

“The works will not disturb the historic feline colony,” Silvia Zuccheri said.

There’s certainly precedent for Italian fashion houses funding the renovation of historical sites: Fendi paid to restore Rome’s Trevi fountain and, in fact, the money for this renovation is coming from funds leftover from Bulgari’s restoration of the Spanish Steps.

Will you put the site of Julius Caesar’s death on your must-see list?