Chiesa Santa Maria Antiqua, Rome

4.3
#148 of 525 in Historic Sites in Rome
Santa Maria Antiqua is a Roman Catholic Marian church in Rome, Italy, built in the 5th century in the Forum Romanum, and for a long time the monumental access to the Palatine imperial palaces.Located at the foot of the Palatine Hill, Santa Maria Antiqua is the oldest Christian monument in the Roman Forum. The church contains the earliest Roman depiction of Santa Maria Regina, the Virgin Mary as a Queen, from the 6th century.HistoryBuilt in the middle of the 5th century on the north-western slope of the Palatine Hill, Santa Maria Antiqua is the earliest and most significant Christian monument within the Roman Forum. The church contains a unique collection of wall paintings from the 6th to late 8th century. The discovery of these paintings have given many theories on the development of early medieval art and given distinctive beliefs in archaeology. The church was abandoned in the 9th century after an earthquake buried the buildings; it remained sealed for over 1000 years until its rediscovery in the early 20th century. Therefore, Santa Maria Antiqua represents a key element for the understanding of the cultural and urban development of the Roman Forum from Antiquity into the first centuries of the Christian period. From 1980 to 2012 the monument was closed to the general public and limited to scholars who applied for a special visit. Following a conservation program carried out by the Soprintendenza per il Patrimonio Storico in partnership with World Monuments Fund, the church is now open for tours.
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Chiesa Santa Maria Antiqua Reviews

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4.4
TripAdvisor
  • The frescoes are the attraction here. Bring a guide book or read the wiki because there is little descriptive information in the church. Know that there is an upper entrance and a lower entrance...  more »
  • Santa Maria Antiqua, located at the base of the Palatine Hill (one of the seven hills of Rome), is the oldest Christian monument in the Roman Forum. The church is close to the Basilica Julia, Temple.....  more »
Google
  • For me one of the most beautiful things to see on the forum. One of the oldest churches in Rome that has still remained reasonably preserved thanks to an earthquake. With light techniques, old frescoes are created. The corridor is well worth the effort. Make sure you have a super ticket for access. It's a Pity that others give a bad assessment because it was closed, this beautiful monument is too short.
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  • The Basilica of Santa Maria Antiqua for just over two years has reopened to the public its splendors after more than thirty years. The Spectacular basilica, discovered by Giacomo Boni in 1900 at the foot of the Palatine, has in the paintings lining its walls a wonderful example unique in the Christian world of the first millennium. Paintings perfectly restored and datable between the SIXTH and NINTH centuries after Christ, NINTH century which coincides with its abandonment following the collapses caused by the earthquake of 847. A must see and admire Place.
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