A forum was a market place. In the city of Rome, there were several fora for different purposes, such as fish, vegetables and meat. The main forum or Forum Romanum, although basically a market place with high priced shops surrounding it, was the civic center of the city. The public buildings and temples were in or around it and the rostra where speeches were made was there. Since the time of Julius Caesar the news of the senate meetings was posted for all to read. It was also a meeting place where various business deals could begin and, like the baths, gossip was exchanged.