Friday, September 21, 2018

San Rocco

where: near the Mausoleum of Augustus and opposite the Museo dell'Ara Pacis
getting there: a short walk from the #64 bus stop at the Bridge of Angels
open: Monday 7:30-9:00 & 16:30-20:00, Tuesday to Saturday 7:30-12:00 & 16:30-20:00 and Sunday 7:30-13:00 & 16:30-20:00

The Baroque church of San Rocco is easy to find, located opposite the modern, white museum building that surrounds the Ara Pacis on Via Ripetta.

Once a small church stood here connected to a hospital commissioned by the confraternity of San Rocco, an association of boatmen and inn owners from the nearby Tiber port, who assisted people with the plague – Saint Roch is the patron saint of plague victims.

In 1646 the church was rebuilt and extended but when funds ran dry the facade was left unfinished until the early 19th century. Around this time the hospital was demolished for the excavation of the Mausoleum of Augustus next door.

The inside of San Rocco is beautifully decorated with marbles, frescoes and stucco work.

The nave ceiling fresco, the Funeral and Apotheosis of Saint Roch, is by artist Achille Scaccioni and was painted during the 19th century  restoration.

The altarpiece by Giacinto Brandi at the high altar shows Saint Roch in Glory and dates from 1674.

San Rocco holds the first known public work by Baroque artist il Baciccio.
The altarpiece by Giovanni Battista Gaulli of the Madonna and Child with Saints Roch and Antonio Abbott (c1665) was moved from the second chapel on the right of the church and now hangs without fanfare on a wall in the sacristy.

Giovanni Gagliardi

Gregorio Preti

Giacinto Brandi

il Baciccio

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Helpful Hints

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

€1.50 B.I.T (Biglietto Integrato a Tempo) is the standard ticket valid for one metro, unlimited tram or bus rides within 100 minutes.

€7.00 B.I.G ( Biglietto Integrato a Giornaliero) is a daily ticket valid for unlimited metro, tram, bus and train travel within Rome.

Purchasing Bus and Metro tickets.

Newsstands, train stations, metro stations, kiosks with the ATAC logo and tabacchi shops sell tickets for the metro, trams and buses.

Large fines apply to travelers not holding or validating their ticket. Tickets once validated start from the time they have been stamped.

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