The Palatine Hill (ˈpælətaɪn; Classical Latin: Palatium; Neo-Latin: Collis/Mons Palatinus; Palatino palaˈtiːno), which relative to the seven hills of Rome is the centremost, is one of the most ancient parts of the city and has been called "the first nucleus of the Roman Empire." The site is now mainly a large open-air museum while the Palatine Museum houses many finds from the excavations here and from other ancient Italian sites.
Imperial palaces were built there, starting with Augustus. Before imperial times the hill was mostly occupied by the houses of the rich.
The hill originally had two summits separated by a depression; the highest part was called Palatium and the other Germalus (or Cermalus). Using the Forma Urbis its perimeter enclosed ; while the Regionary Catalogues of the 4th century enclose .
According to Livy (59 BC – AD 17) the Palatine hill got its name from the Arcadian settlers from Pallantium, named from its founder Pallas, son of Ly