Thursday, April 17, 2014

San Crisogono

where: Piazza Sonnino, 44 off the Viale di Trastevere
open: weekdays 7:30-11:30 & 16:00-19:30, Sundays 8:00-13:00 & 16:00-19:30
information: is it advisable not to enter the church to sight-see during mass (mass times are posted in the entry)

San Crisogono is a minor basilica in Trastevere. A church can be first dated on this site to the 5th century (the ruins of this church, discovered in 1907, can be seen from the entrance under the sacristy inside). In the 12th century the church was completely rebuilt with the bell-tower dating from this time.

In the 17th century with funds from Cardinal Scipione Borghese, the church was once again rebuilt and refurbished in the fashionable Baroque style. The Borghese family emblems of the eagle and dragon can be seen above the main doorway on the facade and in the decorations in the mosaic floor inside which dates from this renovation.

In the sanctuary the the Virgin and Child vault ceiling frescoes are by Giuseppe Cesari and in the Poli Chapel are fresco decorations of the Trinity and Angels by Giacinto Gimignani.

Sadly the ceiling that we see today is only a copy as the beautiful nave ceiling, a painting of the Apotheosis of the Saint by Guercino, was stolen by the French in the 19th century.

Artists in San Crisogono
Paolo Guidotti
Giovanni da San Giovanni

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Helpful Hints

Getting Around

I found walking around Rome was the best way to see everything but the metro, trams and buses are an easy and cheap option also.

Most buses and metros do get crowded and tickets must be bought before boarding and validated when you first get on but it is a great way to get around and see Rome if you are short on time or suffer from sore feet.

Buses #40 and #64 starts at Termini and ends near St. Peter's traveling past other places of interest, returning the same way.

Bus #75 takes you past the Colosseum

Bus #910 takes you to Villa Borghese

#64 & #40 Express Bus


Piazza Venezia

Corso Vittorio Emanuele II

Campo de'Fiori

St. Peter's

The Electric buses that are around Rome can travel into the older parts of the city and wind around the narrow streets. Bus #116 travels though the streets of Centro Storico.

Ticket Options

B.I.T (Biglietto Integrato a Tempo) is the standard ticket valid for one metro,tram or bus ride for a 100 minute period.

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

B.T.I (Turistic) is a 3 day tourist ticket and the same as B.I.G but for more days of travel.

Purchasing Bus and Metro tickets.

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

Large fines apply to travelers not holding ticket. Tickets once they are 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.