Saturday, October 27, 2018

Santa Maria della Concezione dei Cappuccini

where: Via Vittorio Veneto, 27
getting there: metro  linea A/Barberini
open: Monday - Saturday 7:00-13:00 & 15:00-18:00, Sunday 9:30-12:00 & 15:30-18:00

Santa Maria della Concezione, near the Piazza Barberini, was built in 1626 by Capuchin Cardinal Antonio Barberini, brother of Pope Urban VIII.
The church was dedicated – to God in Honour of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary – and belonged to the Franciscan order whose convent was next door.

Today the church is better known for the Crypt of the Cappuccini Friars, now a museum below the church. Through the museum entrance, at a cost €8.50 the crypt, displaying the bones of exhumed Capuchin monks fashioned into wall decorations, chandeliers (and even a clock face) some dressed in monks robes and positioned in the chapels, can be seen along with the history of the Capuchin friars and the painting of Saint Francis in Prayer attributed to Caravaggio.

The inside of the church is beautifully decorated with gilding, stucco and glossy woodwork.
The barrel vaulted ceiling, showing the Assumption was decorated by Liborio Coccetti and dates to 1796. The ten chapels are closed off  by original wooden gates.

In the first chapel on the right is the altarpiece of Saint Michael the Archangel (1635) by Guido Reni. On the side wall is Christ Mocked by Gherardo delle Notti.
The second chapel has fresco work by Giovanni Lanfranco.
In the third chapel is the Ecstasy of Saint Francis by Domenichino from 1641. 
In the first chapel on the left is Saint Paul Restores Vision (c.1631) by Pietro da Cortona.

Guido Reni -right 1st chapel

Mario Balassi - right 2nd chapel

Domenichino - right 3rd chapel

Biaccio Ciarpi - right 4th chapel

Andrea Sacchi - right 5th chapel

Pietro da Cortona - left 1st chapel

ceiling - Liborio Coccetti (1796)

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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

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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