LANUVIUM (more frequently Lanivium in imperial times, mod. Civita Laiiinia), an ancient city of Latium, some 19 m. S.E. of Rome, a little S.W. of the Via Appia. It was situated on an isolated hill projecting S. from the main mass of the Alban Hills, and commanding an extensive view over the low country between it and the sea. It was one of the members of the Latin League, and remained independent until conquered by Rome in 338 B.C. At first it did not enjoy the right of Roman citizenship, but acquired it later; and even in imperial times its chief magistrate and municipal council kept the titles of dictator and senatus respectively. It was especially famous for its rich and much venerated temple of Juno Sospes, from which Octavian borrowed money in 31 B.C., and the possessions of which extended as far as the sea-coast (T. Ashby in Melanges de 1'ecolefranc.aise, 1905, 203). It possessed many other temples, repaired by Antoninus Pius, who was born close by, as was also Commodus. Remains of the ancient theatre and of the city walls exist in the modern village, and above it is an area surrounded by a portico, in opus reticulatum, upon the north side of which is a rectangular building in opus quadratum, probably connected with the temple of Juno. Here archaic decorative terra-cottas were discovered in excavations carried on by Lord Savile. The acropolis of the primitive city was probably on the highest point above the temple to the north. The neighbourhood, which is now covered with vineyards, contains remains of many Roman villas, one of which is traditionally attributed to Antoninus Pius.
See Notizie degli Scavi, passim. (T. As.)
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)