The Church of Santa Maria della Pace (St Mary of the Peace), is one of the best Catholic buildings of Rome, especially if you would like to get in touch with works of art left by some of the main characters and artists of the Renaissance Age.
This church was born from a previous sacred place, named "St Andrew Acquarenaeris", a traditional and local word wich reveals the strange job made by men who, five centuries ago, used to take the water from the Tiber, our river, cleaning it and making it good to sell. Then Pope Sixtus IV decided to restore this old church. It is a pity that he could not see the end of the site construction, because the death came before the end of it. Sixtus IV will tie his name to the Sistine Chapel, commissioned by him. But keep in mind how Popes, at that time, were also kings and so, behaving like kings, used to be politicians, having sometimes troubles with other emperors, dukes or princes. So Sixtus IV decided to dedicate this new church, calling it St Mary to the Peace, remembering the so called "Peace of Bagnolo" that at the second mid of the XV century ratified the end of the hostlities between the State of the Church, the Republic of Venice and the Realm of Naples. Baccio Pontelli was the main architect who took care about the site construction. A man who worked a lot for this Pope, and an artist who followed the suggestions made by Sixuts IV, who would like to control all the aspects of the restorations promoted by him. But in addition to Baccio Pontelli other great masters and artists added their masterpieces and arts here. Over the years, for example, at the fantastic Raphael was commissioned the first chapel on the right, the Chigi Chapel. The fine frescos all around the main arch and entrance of the chapel, were you can see some Sibyls, were directly painted by Raphael. The master worked for Agostino Chigi, a banker who became, at the beginning of the XVI century, probably the richest man in the world! But there is something more, like the first chapel on the left, called Ponzetti, that was designed by Baldassare Peruzzi, another important architect and painter of the first period of the Renaissance Age. But there are also other surprises, like the marble of the Mignanelli chapel (the second on the right), that comes from the ruins of the Temple of Jupiter, the main religious building for the ancient Romans which was erected around the VI century BC. A good way to understand how, during the Renaissance Age, usually the ancient Rome was seen as a sort of huge quorry... Moreover try to visit the wonderful cloister, completely projected by Bramante, probably the main architect of his times (to have an idea, he designed the first version of the St Peter’s Basilica as could be seen today). So, do you see how many things could be found just in one place? #romeisus #Rome #Roma #Raphael #Renaissance #art #cloister #chapel