The so-called Middle Ages, or Dark Ages of Rome, started with the Fall of the Roman Empire in 476 Ad when the Last Emperor Romulus Augustulus was exiled by the barbarian King Odoacer and lasted till the beginning of XV century, almost a thousand years. When we think of Rome our imagination either goes to the Rome of the Ceasars or to the Renaissance and Baroque, however between the Deeds of the Ancient Romans and the Glory of the Renaissance there is a Whole city rich of Art, Architecture, History and Faith to be discovered.
Glitter in the Dark Ages of Rome
Middle Ages Mosaics of Esquilino Hill and “Rione Monti”
Walking tour thought the busy Rione Monti to discover the fantastic medieval mosaics which decorate the Churches in this neighbourhood. Starting from the hidden Santa Pudenziana, where there is a IV cent Apse Mosaic portraying Christ, Paul and Peter. We will then enter the Papal Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, one of Rome’s major churches. We will then end at the Church of Santa Prassede with the beautiful Zeno Chapel, decorated with glittering IX century Carolingian mosaics.
For Those who want to fully understand and experience a Mosaic Workshop there will be a chance to join a Mosaic Demostration in a local workshop or even join a mosaic art class.
From the Dark Ages to the Baroque Splendour: Pietro Cavallini and Gian Lorenzo Bernini in Trastevere
Rione di Trastevere hides Churches with Art from the Middle Ages to the baroque. Starting from the Basilica of Santa Cecilia in Trastevere, built upon one of Rome’s oldest Churche and dedicated to the Patron Saint of Music and Musicians, we will admire the IX centurry Mosaics and the XIII cent Altar by Arnolfo di Cambio. The Church is also famous for the frangments fo the Last Judgement Painted by Pietro Cavallini, an extraordinary frescoed wall hidden behind the Nuns Choir and oly available to be seen by few. We will walk to the Church of S. Francesco a Ripa: here in one of the chapels we will admire the statue of the Beata Ludovica Albertoni, one of the last artworks by Gianlorenzo Bernini.
From Darkness to Enlightenment: the Basilica of San Clemente and the SS. Quattro Coronati
La Basilica di San Clemente is one of the most fascinating sites of the eternal city. With three layers, built one on top of the other, it reflects the historical stratification of Rome from the Ancient Roman times till nowdays. The XII century church has been restored many, the early Christian Basilica that was discovered and excavated in XIX cent and which still preserves the middle-age frescoes. Beneath this is the I century Mithraeum, which the Persian god Mithra sacrified the holy bull. Afterwards we will visit the Middle Ages Fortness Convent of the Santi Quattuor, we will get exclusive access to the Chapel of Saint Silvester with the frescoes portraying the story of the Conversion to Christianity by Emperor Constantine.