2006 World Monuments Watch
Established in the late eighteenth century for the city’s growing Protestant community, Rome’s Cimitero Acattolico, located south of the Aventine Hill, was the final resting place for diplomats, scholars, artists and writers, including the English poets John Keats (1795–1821) and Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792– 1822). Today, the more than 2,500 funerary monuments that dot the garden landscape are falling prey to air pollution, biological growth, and intrusive vegetation. Although select individual monuments have been restored in recent years, far more will be needed if the literary and cultural legacy of this forgotten cemetery is to be preserved.
Since the Watch
December 2010: An organization known as the Friends of the Non-Catholic Cemetery in Rome was established in May 2006. Since then the Friends have sponsored fundraising and volunteering events and have undertaken the implementation of a preservation plan for the cemetery drawn up in coordination with ICCROM. A survey of trees was conducted and a new guide to the graves was published. A quarterly newsletter in English provides updates.