Rome: San Giovanni in Fonte

San Giovanni in Fonte is the name usually given to the octagonal baptistery next to the cathedral of San Giovanni in Laterano, the seat of the Pope as Bishop of Rome. The story of this great basilica is well-known. After his victory over his rival Maxentius at the Milvian Bridge…

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Rome: Chiesa Nuova

The name Chiesa Nuova is obviously just a nickname. The official name of this immense Counter-Reformation church is and has always been the Santa Maria in Vallicella. The church is dedicated to the Virgin Mary and has a subsidiary dedication to Pope Saint Gregorius the Great (590-604). This latter dedication…

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Rome: San Lorenzo in Damaso

The San Lorenzo in Damaso is one of several churches in Rome dedicated to the third century deacon and martyr Saint Lawrence. Other churches in the city seem to be connected to episodes in his life. For instance, the San Lorenzo in Fonte was built on the alleged spot where…

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Rome: San Lorenzo in Fonte

The San Lorenzo is Fonte is an attractive little church that can be found in the Via Urbana, at the intersection of that ancient street with the Via de’ Ciancaleoni. The church is hemmed in between a hostel for pilgrims on the left – the famous Ostello Marello – and…

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Florence: Michelangelo at the Uffizi

Although he considered himself first and foremost a sculptor, Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475-1564) was also an accomplished painter. Pope Julius II (1503-1513) commissioned him to paint the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in Rome, a project Michelangelo worked on between 1508 and 1512. The great artist later returned to this chapel…

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