CASTEL SANT'ANGELO: MUSEO NAZIONALE DI CASTEL SANT'ANGELO
Strongholds and castles in Lazio
- a 2nd century circular castle that houses collections of furniture and paintings in Renaissance apartments.
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Lungotevere Castello, 50
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Castel Sant'Angelo: Museo Nazionale di Castel Sant'Angelo
Il Sant'Angelo castel (o Mole Adriana or "Castellum Crescentii" in the X-XII century) is a Roman monument, located on the right bank of the Tiber, opposite the Pons Aelius (current Sant'Angelo bridge) not far from the Vatican, in the Borgo district.
Initiated by the emperor Hadrian in the 135 as his funeral mausoleum, inspired by the now complete Mausoleum of Augustus, was completed by Antonino Pio in the 139.
It was built in front of the Campo Marzio, to which it was joined by a specially built bridge, the "Ponte Elio".
The mausoleum was composed of a cubic base, covered in Luni marble, with a decorative frieze of heads of cattle (bucrania) And corner pilasters.
In the frieze overlooking the river you were reading the names of emperors buried inside.
On this side it appeared the entrance arch headed to Adrian, the dromos (Access passage) was entirely covered with dusty yellow.
Above the base cube it lays a drum made of lava stone and cement work (CONCRETE work) All covered in travertine and fluted pilasters.
On top of it there was a mound of wooded land surrounded by marble statues (there are fragments).
The mound was finally topped by a bronze quadriga led by Emperor Hadrian depicted as the sun.
Around the mausoleum ran a boundary wall with bronze gate decorated with peacocks, two of them are kept in the Vatican.
Inside shafts of light illuminated the brick spiral staircase linking the dromos to the cell in the center of the mound.
The latter, square and entirely covered with colored marble and was topped by other two burial cells.
On the model of Sant'Angelo castel it was built in the Abbey of Neustift in South Tyrol, in the fifteenth century, a singular round church conceived as a fortress to defend against the Turks and dedicated to Archangel Michael, called, precisely because of its fortified character, "Engelsburg".
Very soon the building, stripped of decorations and coverings, changes its intended use and becomes a fortress.
It is integrated to Aurelian walls in 403, it was later fortified by the popes from the 14th century, to which the construction of the "passetto", The elevated walkway that connects it to the Vatican.
There is at the same time converted into a prison, where among others was imprisoned Benvenuto Cellini in the sixteenth century.
Pope Clement VII, miraculously escaped to the Lanzichenecchi of Charles V during the terrible "sack of Rome"In the 1527 there is enclosed and the castle resists attempts to penetrate, until the capitulation-agreement intervened between the Pope and the Emperor about a month later.
From this episode the usefulness of the Castle leaps to the eyes of the Popes, who undertake grandiose adaptation works and install a real papal residence there.
The major artists of the time (Antonio da Sangallo the young, Raffaello da Montelupo, Michelangelo) work there.
The great pentagonal ramparts surrounding it, latest in a long history of fortifications, is initiated under Pope Paul IV (1555 - 1559) and completed under his successors Francesco Laparelli.
The castle took its current name in 590, during a large outbreak of plague that struck Rome.
The pope at the time, Gregory the Great, would see the archangel Michael, sheathe his sword on the top of the castle, so signifying the end of the epidemic.
To commemorate the event, the statue of an angel crowns the building (before a marble statue by Raffaello da Montelupo dating from the sixteenth century, and then from 1753, a Pierre van Verschaffelt bronze).
- From Tuesday to Sunday, from 9 to 19.30
- 25 December, 1 January
The ticket office closes at 18.30.
The ticket office is located on the ground floor.
- Metro Line A, Lepanto stop, Ottaviano San Pietro stop
- Bus: 62, 23, 271, 982, 280, 40, 34, 49, 87, 926, 990, 64, 46
Text taken from:
- Wikipedia (Creative Commons)
Photo by: Luke Barrett