Christian Rome


St. John Lateran is the cathedral of the Church of Rome and is therefore referred to as the “Mother of all the churches of the world.” Not far you can reach the IV century Basilica of San Clemente, whose late Baroque exterior hides treasures dating mainly back to the Middle Ages. Of particular note is his tabernacle and Cosmatesque floor, the fence of the choir (choir) and mosaics of the Roman school depicting “The Triumph of the Cross” (The Triumph of the Cross). A visit to the frescoes of the Lower Basilica is particularly fascinating, one of which (The Legend of Sisinnus – The Legend of Sisinnus) bears in its inscription initial traits of “vulgar Italian” or vernacular rather than Latin.

Leaving the Colosseum behind us, on our way to Piazza Esquilino meets fifteenth five arched portico of the Basilica of St. Peter in Chains (San Pietro in Vincoli). In his right transept, we are invariably in admiration in front of Michelangelo’s Moses, a sculpture full of force measured initially intended to never completed mausoleum of Pope Julius II.

Continuing on Via Cavour, suddenly we find ourselves in the presence of the best preserved impressive five patriarchal basilicas of Rome, Santa Maria Maggiore (the Papal Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore). Despite the excellent work of restoration of the eighteenth century on its exterior, is really a time we entered the basilica itself that the full value of its artistic treasures, particularly its superb mosaics, becomes evident. The visitors’ attention is drawn to the 36 panels of the nave and the episodes of the Annunciation and the childhood of Jesus dating from the time of Sixtus III. The apse mosaic is the work of the thirteenth century by Jacopo Turriti and depicts the coronation of Mary between Cardinal Giacomo Colonna and Pope Nicholas IV flanked by angels and saints. In addition to the mosaic sumptuous, also nodded admiration are the frescoes (Prophets), the Sistine Chapel adorned with antique marble and the magnificent Pauline Chapel, with its frescoes by Guido Reni.

It ”s time to cross the Tiber for a visit to the fifth century Basilica of Santa Cecilia in Trastevere, located in the heart of one of the most charming areas of Rome. Of particular note are the works of the sanctuary with its famous ciborium (canopy), the high medieval mosaic of the apse and the marble statue of Santa Cecilia, depicting the martyr’s body as seen when his tomb was opened in 1595. The basilica true artistic jewel is the masterpiece of Pietro Cavallini, a wall painting of the Last Judgment, a fine example of pre-Giotto art.

Walking north along the Tiber (Tevere) you get to Piazza San Pietro (St. Peter’s Square) by Bernini’s genius and antechamber of the most important architectural ensemble of the Catholic world. Millions of tourists and faithful each year flock to this small state, attracted both by superb works of art and its unparalleled deep symbolic meaning.

Explore The Christian heritage of Rome it should not be limited to visiting its churches. There are, in fact, artistic treasures in churches often referred to as minor, even if in reference to their size. This is precisely the case of theChurch of Santa Maria del Popolo in Piazza del Popolo, home to two spectacular paintings Caravaggio. The Conversion of St. Peter and the Crucifixion reinvented religious painting with their innovative use of dramatic light and style anti-heroic perceptually depicting physical and emotional state of their subjects.

A few hundred meters away is the church of Trinita dei Monti, with its twin bell towers, creating an image of rare beauty along with Piazza di Spagna (Spanish Steps Monti) that took place at the Spanish Steps below. Continuing towards the Quirinale, it is the church of San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane (or San Carlino), where the genius of Baroque architect Francesco Borromini is fully expressed in the undulating facade and the elliptical dome.

Two more examples of precious brilliance inspired by Borromini is located in the center of the city while we gasp in awe at the Church of Saint Yves at La Sapienza (Chiesa di Sant’Ivo alla Sapienza) and the symbols of its dome mixtilinear, incomparable elegance Sant ‘ Agnese in Agone is obvious even to the casual viewer in Piazza Navona.

The nearby Church of St. Ignatius (Church of Saint Ignatius of Loyola in Campo Marzio) is a favorite with tourists that are enhanced by the effect of the famous amazing Tromp l’oeil, illusionistic ceiling frescoes of the Jesuit Brother Andrea Pozzo “Entry of St. Ignatius in Paradise. ”

The Chiesa Nuova (New Church or Santa Maria in Vallicella) and the Church of Jesus (Mother Church for the Society of Jesus) both feet in Corso Vittorio Emanuele II and are perfect examples of architecture Counter, although the first incorporates a number of “licenses” art (such as the passage connecting the baroque side chapels).

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