Mausoleum of Augustus, Rome The Monument The circular monument had a diameter of almost 88m (290ft) and was about 44m high. It consisted of several layered concentric circles with a slope on top of each ring. The bottom slope was planted with Cypress trees. On top of a tumulus on the top ring stood a large bronze statue of Augustus. The entrance was marked by a bronze door flanked by two Egyptian obelisks (now located at the Piazza de Quirinale and the Piazza dell'Esquilino). The mausoleum's outer walls were covered with white marble. The Ashes The ashes of the cremated emperors and family members buried in the mausoleum were put in golden urns, placed in niches at the burial chamber at the center of the monument. The ashes remained untouched until the fifth century when barbarians broke through the bronze door, stole the urns and threw out the ashes.turkeyarena.com People Buried at the Mausoleum The first person buried in the mausoleum was Marcellus, Augustus's nephew, in 23 B.C. Many emperors were buried here, among them Augustus himself, Tiberius, Caligula and Claudius. The last person to be buried in the mausoleum was emperor Nerva in A.D. 98. The next emperor, Trajan, was buried at the base of the Trajan Column and his successor, Hadrian, built a new mausoleum, now the Castel Sant'Angelo. Today's Ruins Today only the brick core is left of what once was one of the most sacred of all monuments in Rome. This is the result of several sackings, neglect and its use in the middle ages as a fortress. It was later even used as a vineyard, garden and theater. Archeological excavation only started in 1926, largely lead by Mussolini, who identified himself with Augustus.