Basilica of St. Mary of the Angels and Martyrs in Rome, Italy

In 1563, at the age of 88, Michelangelo was asked by Pius IV to create three proposals for converting the frigidarium (large cold pool) of the Baths of Diocletian into a basilica. Part of the motive was to honor the Christian slaves who died while constructing the bathhouse. Upon completion, the Catholic church was named the Basilica of St. Mary of the Angels and the Martyrs. Pius IV was interred inside. From 1870 until 1946, Santa Maria degli Angeli was the state church for the Kingdom of Italy. The basilica is still a venue for official ceremonies of the Italian State. In the foreground is a marvelous fountain at Piazza della Repubblica. It deserves a closer look.


Piazza della Repubblica, 10, 00185 Roma RM, Italy


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