Section of Caesar's Forum
Caesar's Forum was a rectangle paved in travertine slabs, flanked by porticoes with two naves. The western portico, overlooking the Capitol, was home to two long, narrow “tabernae” (shops) The magnificent Temple of Venus Genetrix was built in Corinthian style at the bottom end of the Forum, on top of a raised podium that unusually, was accessed by stairs built at the sides rather than to the front.
Very little remains of the original forum complex built in Caesar's time, but a few pieces from the orders along the portico and the pilasters that screened a niche at the head of it, are displayed inside the museum. These pieces represent important and rare evidence of the moment in which the decorative tradition of the Ancient Romans was born, which coincided with the opening of the first Luni (now called Carrara) marble quarry and marble began to replace the old tradition of plastered tufa or travertine. As far as the Trajan period of Caesar's Forum is concerned, the Museum has a few pieces of the decorative elements used for the Temple of Venus Genetrix. The external walls of the cella were embellished with sculpted panels that portrayed cherub-like figures called “eroti” in scenes that were both decorative and symbolic. Five key images have been re-constructed from the many pieces found. These must have been created as variations of the scene, and in some cases, their size was slightly altered in order to better suit their location. Some of the slabs and some sections of the wall facings were engraved in such a way that they created a typical brickwork pattern.