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© Copyright 2018

Gianluca Pica
 


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BLOG OF A TOUR GUIDE IN ROME

11/02/2019, 12:09

#atourguiderome, #tomb, #unaguidaturisticaroma, #romeisus, #rome, #roma, #basilica, #sanpietro, #basilicasanpietro, #tomba, #bernini, #barocco, #architettura,



TOMB-OF-POPE-ALEXANDER-VII


 The St Peter Basilica is well known for all the incredibile beuties that are inside, considering also the funeral monuments dedicated to the Popes. Maybe the best one is the tomb of Alexander VII...



It is the gorgeous tomb of Pope Alexander VII, a man who was able to embellish #Rome, commissioning incredible monuments and inaugurating great site constructions, just in 12 years of pontificate (1655 - 1667). This #Pope commissioned to #Bernini, master of the Baroque Age, several things, like his big funeral monument. Imagine how Alexander VII asked to Bernini this project just five months after his election! Why? Who knows...What we know is how Bernini, who was a star and a busy man, was not able to begin the project when the Pope died for the so called "mal di pietra" (painful kidney stones). Just at the 1678, and after other two Popes, this impressive tomb was completed. It stands in this position, not so far from the main altar of the St Peter Basilica. It was the closest way, at that time, to put this tomb next to the St Peter’s one. Probably the main character here is the Pope, Alexander VII, who is praying on his knees. He is almost imploring, and all his deeds are modest. Moreover the project is completed by four marble statues depicting and personifying important Virtues: Justice and Prudence at the background, Charity and Thruth at the foreground. The last one is leaning her foot on a globe, to symbolize how it should be an universal value. But there is also a legend: it seems that when there is the spot with the England, on this globe, Bernini designed also a nail, to symbolize how the Anglicanims was a big problem for Alexander VII! Just politics on a tomb... Moreover the basement, and mainly the "diaspro" drape, are giving a vertical push to the whole tomb. Let me also tell you how Bernini didn’t personally worked the marble, he didn’t personally used iron tools to create these shapes. He used to have a big equipe, men who worked for him following his preliminary drawings and his terracotta models. Let me conclude dedicating some sentences to the Death, that is depicted with this fine bronze skeleton, holding a hourglass, that is almost hiding behind the red drape. What does it mean? This iconic figure is Thanatos, the mal version of the Death, who lived in the dark underground of the earth. It seems that just few men could real face the Death, who loves hiding and concealing... #atourguiderome #romeisus #basilica #tomb 


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