Sunday, September 30, 2018

Chiesa Nuova

where: Piazza della Chiesa Nuova on Corso Vittorio Emanuele II
open: 7:30-12:00 & 16:30-19:00
getting there: #40 or 64 bus from Termini to Saint Peter's

Santa Maria in Vallicelli is in the Piazza della Chiesa Nuova on the Corso Vittorio Emanuele II and is simply known as Chiesa Nuova.  This beautiful Baroque church was completed in 1599 and modeled on the nearby church of il Gesù.

The church was intended to be simplistic inside and designed with white-washed walls and minimal decorations depicting the Virgin Mary as an example of the Counter-Reformation, but in 1606 Rubens was commissioned to paint three pictures for the sanctuary and patrons then filled the church chapels with artworks by Giovanni Lanfranco, Girolamo Muziano, Cerrini, Federico Barocci, Cavaliere d'Arpino, Lazzaro Baldi, Giuseppe Ghezzi, Daniele Seiter, Guido Reni, Carlo Maratta, Peter Paul Rubens and Francesco Trevisani.

In 1664 Pietro da Cortona decorated the entire ceiling of the church, painting the nave ceiling, the Triumph of the Trinity in the dome, the pendentives with Isiah, Jeremiah, Daniel and Ezechiel and the apse fresco in the main altar. A passageway left of the main altar takes you through to the sacristy where Pietro da Cortona also painted the ceiling.

The Madonna with Angels at the high altar is by Peter Paul Rubens and surrounds a 13th century icon of Our Lady of Vallicella. The paintings on the left and right are also by Rubens.

On the left of the main altar is the Cappella di San Fillipo Neri. Fillipo Neri was an important figure in the Counter-Reformation and in an urn in this chapel are his relics. The above altarpiece of the saint is by Guido Reni.

In the second chapel on the right is a copy of Caravaggio's Deposition. The original was removed by the French in 1797. When it was finally returned to Rome it was taken to the Vatican Museum where it hangs in the Pinacoteca Vaticana.
Scipione Pulzone - right 1st chapel

Gerolamo Muziano - right 3rd chapel

Domenico Cerrini - right 5th chapel

Cavaliere d'Arpino - right

Carlo Maratta - right

Rubens - main altar

Guido Reni - left Chapel of San Filippo Neri

Cesare Nebbia - left 2nd chapel

Cavaliere d'Arpino - left 1st chapel

ceiling - Pietro da Cortona

Artists in Chiesa Nuova
Giovanni Lanfranco
Girolamo Muziano
 Federico Barocci
Cavaliere d'Arpino
Lazzaro Baldi
Pietro da Cortona
Cesare Nebbia
Giuseppe Ghezzi
Daniele Seiter
Guido Reni
Carlo Maratta
Peter Paul Rubens
Francesco Trevisani.
Scipione Pulzone
Domenico Cresti
Cristoforo Roncalli
Carlo Saraceni
Duranto Alberti

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Getting Around

I found walking Rome was the best way to see everything.

The metro, trams and buses are also an easy and cheap option.

Buses and the metro can get crowded. Tickets must be bought before boarding and validated.

Beware of pickpockets.

Buses 40 (express) and 64 start at Termini and end near Saint Peter's, traveling past places of interest, returning the same way.

Some stops along the 64 route are:


Piazza Venezia

Via Nazionale

Corso Vittorio Emanuele II

Bus 75 takes you past the Colosseum to Trastevere

Bus 910 takes you to Villa Borghese

Ticket Options

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Purchasing Bus and Metro tickets.

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These are a few of my favourite books about Rome

The Cardinal's Hat by Mary Hollingsworth
This book tells the story of one of the sons of Lucrezia Borgia who became a cardinal during the 16th century.

The Tigress of Forli by Elizabeth Lev
I love this book telling the story of Caterina Sforza who was fighting against the Borgia pope to retain the rights of her land and her freedom.

The Popes by John Julius Norwich
A detailed but easy and enjoyable book to read about the history of the papacy and the popes.

The Pope's Daughter by Caroline P Murphy
This book describes in beautiful detail, the life and times of Pope Julius II daughter, Felice della Rovere.

The Families Who Made Rome by Anthony Majanlahti
I love this Book! It explains the families who made Rome what it is as we see it today and also looks at their triumphs, scandals and failures.

Rome by Robert Hughes
This book explains Rome from its beginning and expands on the Renaissance and Baroque until present times.

The Lost Painting by Jonathan Harr
Another of my favourite reads about a lost Caravaggio painting and the search for its provenance.

other sites I trust for information on Rome are:
Rome Art Lover
Churches of Rome wiki