Mamertine Prison | Attraction Guides | History Hit

Mamertine Prison

Rome, Lazio, Italy

History Hit

24 Nov 2020

About Mamertine Prison

The Mamertine Prison in Rome, also known as Carcere Mamertino, is an ancient prison thought to date back to perhaps as early as the seventh century BC. The Romans continued using the Mamertine Prison throughout the Republican and Imperial eras as late as the fourth century AD, with executions also taking place there.

Christian legend says that the Mamertine Prison was the site where Saints Peter and Paul were incarcerated. According to these accounts, Peter managed to create a spring in his cell, allowing him to perform baptisms on his cellmates and guards.

Today, the remains of the Mamertine Prison are found under the church of San Giuseppe dei Falegnami near the Roman Forum. Dark and dank, the dungeons are accessed via a winding staircase and offer a glimpse into the horrors experienced by criminals of Ancient Rome.

It is also worth noting that, near the Mamertine Prison (some say right next to it) would have been the location of the Gemonian Stairs, also notorious as a site of executions in Ancient Rome.

Featured In

Italy Historic Sites

Discover the best Historic sites in Italy, from Ostia Antica to The Trevi Fountain and more, includes an interactive map of Italian cultural places, landmarks and monuments.

Roman Sites in Italy

Discover the top Roman ruins in Italy, from the famous Pantheon to the Aquileia Basilica and more, includes an interactive map of Ancient Roman sites to visit.

Rome Historic Sites

Discover the best historic places in Rome, from the Colosseum to the Capuchin Crypt and more, includes an interactive map of Rome's cultural landmarks, monuments and museums.

Famous Prisons

Discover the the most famous prisons in the world, from Alcatraz to the Devil's Island and more, includes an interactive map of the most notorious jails of the world.