Friday, March 1, 2019

Santi Cosma e Damiano

where: Via dei Fori Imperiali, 1
getting there: short walk from the Colosseum or the Vittorio Emanuele II Monument
open: 10:00-13:00 & 15:00-18:00

The Basilica of Santi Cosma e Damiano is an ancient church from the 6th century built into the ruins of a 4th century Roman temple in the Forum dedicated to martyred brothers, Saints Cosmas and Damian, who were Arabian physicians. 
The entrance to the church is via the cloisters of the 17th century monastery next door on the street leading to the Colosseum.

inside: The main altar has a beautiful apse mosaic dating from the 6th century (which can better be seen by using the coin-operated light) and it is this example of Byzantine mosaics that the church is visited for.
The the rest of the decorations of the church which date from the 1632 restoration look a little shabby and worst for wear.
The altarpiece by Giovanni Baglione is very damaged. It is here that the Baroque artist was buried.

Giovanni Baglione

Giovanni Baglione

ceiling - Marco Tullio Montagna

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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