There would have been a large central plunge-pool, on the rim of which stood seven silver stags and one golden lamb, from the mouths of which poured water (supplied by the ancient aqueduct Aqua Claudia via the plumbing of the original bath house). These remained empty until 1702, when they were used to display colossal statues of the twelve apostles. It was rebuilt by Pharaoh Ramesses II, who added an inscription to the base of the obelisk. Note that the volutes in the capitals are on two different levels -this is unusual. It has 28 marble steps, now cased in wood. Just above each doorway was a large window. There are four rectangular bas-relief panels, executed in 1736 on the theme of the life of St John the Baptist. Father Marchi was appointed as director of the new museum. This resulted in the present piazza. The principal dedication is, and always has been, to Christ our Saviour. A close-up of the surviving mediaeval elements is here. The doors to the chapel are contemporary with it, and are said to be made of an alloy of bronze, silver and gold. The world weps, peace runs away, the wobbling triumph of the Church gives up rest. Sie ist dem Märtyrer Clemens I. geweiht, der in der Zeit von 88 bis 97 Bischof von Rom war. The inner side aisles were the same length as the central nave, but the outer side aisles were ten metres shorter and ended at a pair of large rectangular chambers which protruded beyond the external side walls on each side. There was a central nave with two side aisles on each side (the Italian nomenclature describes these as "five naves"), with each side aisle being half the width of the central nave. A drawing by Heemskerck can be found on a web-page here. The work is considered his masterpiece (photo here). Pope Martin V (1417-1431) restored the nave roof again, and had the extant Cosmatesque floor laid. Basilica di San Giovanni in Laterano. The ancients could not fire bricks at a high enough temperature to guarantee them to be watertight, so their bricks are slightly porous. One is that they were taken from the Temple of Jupiter on the Capitoline, and had been recast from the bronze prows of Cleopatra's ships, captured in the battle of Actium by Emperor Augustus. The wall frescoes have recently been restored again. The chapel is a spectacular, no-expenses-spared example of what is usually called late Baroque (tardobarocco). Pope Zacharias (741-51), a Greek himself, is the first pope on record to initiate substantial building works in the patriarchium or papal palace, which were continued by Pope Hadrian I (772–779) and which eventually resulted in the enormous mediaeval palace. To the left is a neo-Classical memorial to Ottaviano Lancellotti-Ginetti 1858, with a good stand-alone bust in antique style. It was commissioned by Prince Alessandro Torlonia and erected by Quintiliano Raimondi in 1838, with the help of a noted team of sculptors. Then, it starts in the outer side aisle to the right of the entrance and deals with the chapels and other items in anticlockwise order up this aisle and around the back of the high altar and so back down the left hand outer side aisle. The altarpiece is a mosaic copy of a portrait of St Andrew Corsini based on an original by Guido Reni; the cartoon was by Agostino Masucci, and the mosaic work was done by Fabio Cristofari. The corridor beyond runs down the left hand side of the choir and apse to access the three sacristies. The aisle floors by Bernini have lozenge-shaped tiles in white, black and pale grey which give a trompe l'oeil effect of cubes. Die ‘Arcibasilica di San Giovanni in Laterano’, oder auch Erzbasilika wurde 313 unter Kaiser Konstantin dem Großen gegründet. He was the father of the more famous Giuseppe Valadier. An 18th century copy of apse and mosaics is near the Scala Santa, but not on the original site which was nearer the basilica's façade and faced the other way. According to it, Pope Miltiades held a synod in the year 313 convenerunt in domum Faustae in "Laterani" [sic]. Bay II North has a large porphyry slab with a Cosmatesque border, as does Bay IV North. The original tomb was next to the altar of St Mary Magdalene in the nave before its destruction. Another mediaeval tradition is that it was here that Pope St Gregory the Great (590-604) first transcribed the Gregorian chant used in choral liturgical offices in western Europe from the early Middle Ages (in actual fact, the developed monophonic chant familiar still in some monasteries was a later development). These arms have barrel vaulting embellished with gilded octagonal coffers containing rosettes, four rows for the main arms but only two for the side arms. Bottom: The Consecration of the Basilica by Ricci, and The Building of the Basilica by Nogari. The suggested ownership of this house depends on the name of the empress being found on a piece of lead pipe near the obelisk in the Piazza di San Giovanni Laterano. (The Capitoline Wolf was thought to be one of these, but is actually early mediaeval.). It is thought that the well-head originally belonged to the palace, where it was venerated as the "Well of the Samaritan Woman" in the early Middle Ages. The ceiling was designed in 1592 by Taddeo Landini, and executed by a team of carpenters whose names are given as Francesco Matalani, Niccolò Varisco, Valerio Valle and Giuseppe de' Bianchi da Narni. By the entrance to the Sagrestia dei Beneficiati are two salvaged mediaeval mosaic epigraphs. Pope Sixtus V was told of its documented existence, and it was found in 1587 seven metres below the surface of the vegetable gardens that the Circus had become, broken in three pieces. This is sufficient proof that the transept was not rebuilt in 1592 under Pope Clement VIII, only remodelled. In 1236, Pope Gregory IX issued a Bull confirming that the shrine-chapel of the two saints was to be regarded as under the jurisdiction of the bishop of Porto-Santa Rufina. Pope Urban VIII (1623-9) began a massive restoration project in 1625, and you can spot the bees from the heraldry of his family, the Barberini, infesting the interior in several places. The portals are trabeated, that is, each has two pairs of Composite pilasters supporting a horizontal entablature which bears a pin balustrade for the arched loggia portal above. The dome contains frescoes of The Passion of Christ by Baccio Ciarpi. This is why modern "iron" railings look stupid. This shows St John having a vision of Our Lady while writing the Book of Revelation; the reference is Rev. These are evidence that Pope Urban VIII had the colonnade dismantled and re-erected in his restoration. Archiprezbiterzy Bazyliki Laterańskiej. His memorial has a pair of black marble Doric columns flanking a large slightly elliptical tondo, which contains an interesting (although damaged) portrait fresco of the cardinal in his scarlet robes. The eastern entrance is similar. The wall above it has three windows, a small one above the keystone and two larger ones flanking it. The following is a fair scholarly consensus: The edifice was 100 metres long (almost exactly), and 54.5 metres wide. The upper part depicts the bust of Christ in a dark blue empyrean with the red clouds of dawn, accompanied by four angels on each side and with a six-winged seraph above. Above each arch, except the central two again, is a large rectangular window flanked by Ionic pilasters with the capitals incorporating women's heads and supporting an omega cornice. This was taken as evidence of a circular 4th (?) to associate with a faithful mind. It was refitted by Borromini. One, the Tabula Lateranensis Magna, lists the relics held by the basilica and the other, dated 1291, commemorates work done by Pope Nicholas I (858-67). The columns support a horizontal entablature spanning the portal, made up of three large blocks of stone. The choir triumphal arch is very similar to that at the end of the nave, with a pair of pink granite Corinthian columns supporting the archivolt on posts. Pope Gregory XVI (1831–1846) set up the Museo Profano Lateranense here in 1844, the collection comprising pagan Roman statues, relief sculptures and mosaics. Modern writings are obviously relying on Nibby 1838 and Vasi 1818. It was made by Pompeo Targone. There is some surmise that this house was the original headquarters of the papacy donated by Emperor Constantine as the so-called Domus Faustae, but this is unprovable. The crawling epigraph on the pedestal is here. The central entrance portal is almost as twice as wide as the side ones. He is buried in the crypt beneath the chapel, and is watched over there by a marble Pietà by Antonio Montauti 1733. It was paid by the Colonna family, and completed in its present form in 1425 under Pope Martin V. The family's heraldic device of a single column can be seen depicted in several places on the floor. The sculpture was inaugurated in 1927 on the seven hundredth anniversary of the death of the saint, and is here to commemorate an event from his life. It is thought that this also belonged to a private villa, but which one (those already described, or an unknown other) cannot be decided without further excavations. The cornice is also dentillated, but also has little lions' masks. The latter shelters a family coat-of-arms, and has a pair of putti sitting on it by Pietro Paolo Naldini. The main façade, in travertine limestone, is the work of Alessandro Galilei. The main exhibition area occupies the right hand corridor of the Portico Leonino, and that part of the transverse corridor behind the apse. These columns in turn support a bowed (convex) triangular pediment on posts, with the Pamphilj dove in white marble in the tympanum. Contributions to the cost were made by King Charles V of France and one Pietro Belliforte, whose heraldic shields were incorporated into the decoration in gratitude. Next is a monochrome fresco featuring the heraldry of Pope Innocent X with two allegorical female figures by Carlo Maratta, which is above the doorway of the Chapel of St Venantius. This was designed by Floriano Bodini, and is a single panel showing the Mother and Child standing in front of the crucified Christ. It has been parochial for centuries, but nowadays the parish is not based in the basilica itself but in the baptistery. Before the late 19th century, the sacristy provision of the basilica was rather inadequate with the main sacristy immediately behind the Cappella Colonna (see below) and a chapter house for the canons to its west. It is thought that the baths belonged to the "Trapezoidal House" mentioned above, since they were next door to it. This is important in the context of the basilica because it has been claimed as the original location of the famous equestrian statue of the emperor, which stood for centuries where the obelisk now is before being moved to the Campidoglio in 1538. Lateran Basilica: Interior and Apse. It is uncertain whether this particular tower was put up by Pope Sergius III in the 10th century, or was a later 11th century replacement. Rome can boast with one of the oldest Christian churches in the world, Basilica di San Giovanni in Laterano. These will do for most purposes -but should be avoided in liturgical contexts. Dedication: It is not, but is a sort of shrine to a fresco fragment from a lost cycle of frescoes within the mediaeval Loggia of Benedictions commissioned by Pope Boniface VIII for the Jubilee of 1300. Above there is an attic with a plinth over each of the ten pilasters, those over the central two pairs being slightly higher than the others and with pin balustrades linking them. The entrance from the piazza is flanked by a pair of monochrome depictions, of the emperor Constantine and Pope Sylvester, of SS John the Baptist and John the Evangelist. This has a spectacular spire with gilded crockets and with gilt vine-scroll decoration, and is accompanied by four gables each with an octofoil aperture containing a bust of one of the Evangelists. He also added two more piers to the counterfaçade, engaged with the wall there and having diagonal inner faces (a very Borrominian detail). Recommended . 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