Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli

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Via Cernaia, Rome, Italy

Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli Rome Reviews

tj1777 tj1777
314 reviews
Basilica Santa Maria degli Angeli Dec 27, 2011
306 The terme di Diocletiani opens

Fact about Terme di Diocleziano: “The building of the bath started under Maximian in 298 in cooperation with his co-emperor Diocletian. It was the greatest of all the imperial baths in Rome – the work wasn’t finished during the two emperor’s reign but was finally finished by Constantine.”

When you walk up to the church at the Piazza della Repubblica and see the church it doesn’t look like much. The entry is pretty dull - it actually look like it is half a ruin - which might be because the original church here was build in the great roman tradition on just incorporating some of the previous buildings at the same spot - which just happen to be the Terme di Diocleziano.

The original church of Maria degli Angeli was designed by Michelangelo but it has gone through significant remodeling later - hence much of Michelangelo’s original designs are long gone. The inside is still impressive though - the minute you go through the door you are surprised by the interior - it is just hard to comprehend how different the inside and the outside of this church is. The inside is a stunning church with decorations at the different niches and the main alter of the church.

The floor is nice looking as well and for some reason it got some sort of a timeline - which I never really understood what meant. There is also a display of the invention of the pendulum in the church.
The entrance to the church
Nativity scene at the entrance
Chapel and timeline on the floor
Roof in chapel
3 / 3 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
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tj1777 says:
Thanks for the comment Brian - I got the understanding that the remodelling of the church had been quite significant. So I don't know how much of Michelangelos original remain. They changed the orientation of the church which much indicate significant modification to the interior.

I think you are probably right about the pendulum. There was some info on the poster in the church - I just forgot what it was.
Posted on: Feb 26, 2012
spocklogic says:
I'm not sure, and Michelangelo's architecture is still the basic structure and aesthetic, but there are changes here that perhaps obscure the original design.

The timeline thing on the floor is a sundial called the "Clementine Line" and Named after Pope Clementine XI, who commissioned it as a time piece and astronomical reference for religious purposes. Signs of the zodiac surround it on either side. Here is a timepiece Roma reference:

http://roma.andreapollett.com/S1/roma-c11.htm

I think the pendulum is a tribute to Galileo and a way of honoring him. Although the church condemned Galileo for undermining Aristotle's centrist view of man, the Copernican view won out in the end. Galileo's observations supported the Copernican view and he was the first to examine some of the unique principles of pendulums. There is some other stuff there too that pays tribute to him. Viva Galileo!
Posted on: Feb 24, 2012
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Vipin Vipin
691 reviews
Nice church! Feb 22, 2010
Located just seconds away from the Repubblica metro station, this church is definitely worth visiting. Michelangelo himself worked on the church in the sixteenth century, and it houses the tomb of a Pope as well.

The façade of the church is quite plain and doesn’t look very appealing as it lacks any wonderful statues or ornate decoration to entice you in. Venture in though, and you are rewarded with a rather grandly built interior. The columns and liberal use of marble really make this church an impressive one to visit. I really liked the presence of a meridian line (i.e. a sundial) on the floor; it certainly made it characteristic in comparison to the other churches in Rome.

You will definitely pass this church as it is very near to Termini train station and Repubblica metro station. When passing it, do take a little time to go in and have a quick look.
4 / 4 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
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