The pride of Nîmes, this is one of the most beautiful, and singularly best-preserved Roman temples of Europe, built around 12 B.C. Set on a raised platform with tall Corinthian columns, this so-called "square house" is more rectangular in shape. It may be small, but it’s perfectly proportioned: 26m (85 ft.) long by 15m (49 ft.) wide and 15m (49 ft.) high. It inspired the builders of La Madeleine in Paris, and Thomas Jefferson’s Virginia Capitol building. It makes a perfect start to a Nîmes visit with a film showing the founding of the city from its Celtic roots through the fortunes of a fictional family from 55 B.C. to A.D. 90. A changing roster of cultural and art exhibits is presented inside.