There's really not much up here, which probably explains why we had never been in the neighbourhood before. It started for us at the Quattro Fontane -- the 4 fountains just up from Piazza Barberini. Built in 1593, there's a fountain on each cortner of the intersection of the road with Via XX Settembre.
|In need of cleaning|
|#2 of 4|
|A quiet Saturday afternoon|
|Impressive facade, and in the middle...|
|Nice lions out front|
|The city side|
On our way down, we had passed a few churches that were closed for the afternoon, so we headed back and went inside -- and found tour groups, of all things. The star attraction: the hopelessly over decorated Baroque church of Santa Maria della Vitoria. Popular with tour groups for several reasons: the gross overkill of the decorations...
|Lots of stuff|
|The back of the church|
Not finding this quarter all that interesting, we headed to one final church we wanted to see in a roundabout route -- and ran across the back of a huge palace.
|A unique thing to have at the entrance|
In 1631 the remains of thousands of Capuchin friars were exhumed and transferred to the crypt. The bones were arranged along the walls, and the friars began to bury their own dead here, as well as the bodies of poor Romans, whose tomb was under the floor of the present Mass chapel.
The crypt, or ossuary, now contains the remains of 4,000 friars buried between 1500 and 1870, during which time the Roman Catholic Church permitted burial in and under churches. The underground crypt is divided into five chapels, lit only by dim natural light seeping in through cracks, and small fluorescent lamps. The crypt walls are decorated with bones in elaborate fashion, making this crypt a macabre work of art. Some of the skeletons are intact and draped with Franciscan habits, but for the most part, individual bones are used to create elaborate ornamental designs. There are 6 chapels, including the Crypt of the Skulls, the Crypt of the Pelvises and the Crypt of the Leg Bones and Thigh Bones.
Just right off weird. Photos were not allowed, but this link will take you to the Wikipedia page on the crypt where there are some photos, and a link to a bad YouTube video of the crypts.
Those of you who are Dan Brown fans will remember from The DaVinci Code that the bad guy Silas wore a celice belt and flogged himself with the a nasty set of ropes called The Punishment.
|Yep, that's a celice belt|
On our way back home, we saw the hoards at the Trevi Fountain again. Still silly.
|Why are they all here?|
|The pot department|
|The pet department|