Category Archives: churches

The not so secret view of St Peter’s cupola

One of the most famous view of St Peter’s can be seen through a tiny keyhole at the Priory of the Knights of Malta on the Aventine hill. Looking through the door leading to the Priory’s secret gardens on Piazza … Continue reading

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The mystical triangle

Nothing in Rome is left to chance, but it is not always obvious at first glance.  At any time in history, when emperors and popes built palaces, temples or churches, they had a grand plan. Beyond the symbolism inherent to … Continue reading

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Hidden treasures at Trinita dei Monti

The church of La Trinità dei Monti on top of the Spanish steps is famous for its unequal position overlooking the centre of Rome. It is one of the most memorable sights of the eternal city. I personally find the … Continue reading

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Urbi et Orbi

It is difficult to write about Rome without mentioning the still overwhelming presence of the Pope and the Vatican. As is the custom on Christmas and Easter day, the Pope gives its benediction to the city of Rome (urbi) and … Continue reading

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Bramante’s perfect proportions

Hidden in the small cloister of St Pietro in Montorio on the Janiculum hill, Bramante’s Tempietto (little temple) is considered as the High-Renaissance masterpiece encompassing all the ideals and ideas of the time. Today, it is overshadowed by the many … Continue reading

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Piazza di Spagna

My favourite time to go to Piazza di Spagna is early in the morning, between 8 and 9 am, before it gets too busy. The light is already quite bright, but still clear, and the atmosphere peaceful.  I particularly like … Continue reading

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An olive grove in the middle of the city

Italy is well known for its many monasteries, usually located in beautiful and peaceful settings to favour a life of meditation.  However, one such monastery exists in a very urban part of Rome: the Abbazia delle Tre Fontane or Abbey … Continue reading

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A shining light from the Dark Ages

For a period of a thousand years, from the fall of the Roman Empire in 476 to the 15th century Renaissance, Rome went through its own dark ages. The city was no longer the centre of the known world, the … Continue reading

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The weight of tradition

Rome is a city of traditions, a city of the past, where rituals stay alive century after century. Among the odd ones in my view is the celebration held every year on the 16th of March at Palazzo Massimo alle … Continue reading

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Patron saint turning beauty icon?

Santa Cecilia, the patron saint of music and choir singing, is particularly famous in Rome, her city of birth where she suffered martyrdom. One of Rome’s most renowned orchestra and choir is named after her, the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia. … Continue reading

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