Friday, April 2, 2010

Rapporto di Roma 12: San Pietro in Vincoli

We headed out from our hotel to see the Michelangelo Moses at the basilica San Pietro in Vincoli, or Saint Peter in Chains. I saw a group of Rome's finest and asked them if I could take their photo. Immediately the cutest of them left the group, saying that he was not Polizia. I politely urged him to join his pals again, but he declined. Here they are, Rome's finest!

Below is a street bazaar where we shopped briefly. No beads for mom here! Everything was too cheap.

Here is our destination: San Pietro in Vincoli. Who put a street lamp right in front of it? The front is not notable, since it has been reworked through history. The inside is a different matter.

This is the Michelangelo Moses, taken with my shitty camera. I got frustrated asking Sean for his shots, so you will have to suffer with the terrible lighting of my camera. Please enlarge it.

Note that Moses has horns [which I didn't notice until I returned and just read about it on Wikipedia, for shame, for shame.]. Apparently the tomb of Pope Julius II is behind the sculpture.

Above, you can see that the sculpture of Moses is seated in a huge arrangement of figures and in a temple like scenario that doesn't seem to fit into this tiny basilica. That is because it was meant to fit into St. Peter's. It was completed in 1545.

In the photo below, you can see how it is only squeezed into this tiny church and dwarfs the main altar which is to the left.

This reliquary, in front of the main altar, is said to hold the chains that held St. Peter captive in Jerusalem.

Here is a photograph of the main altar from a distance and you can see the reliquary in the foreground. Note how dark the basilica is.

Here is the ceiling fresco which was painted by Giovanni Battista Parodi, portraying The Miracle of the Chains, 1706. The fresco was quite dingy and seemed to need a cleaning.

Supposedly, the tomb of Cardinal Cinzo Aldobrandini in behind a grim reaper, but I noticed two grim reapers, one was behind some construction material and then this one, which I photographed. So, there is a 50% chance that the Cardinal is behind this one. LOL!

This is a gorgeous Byzantine mosaic of Saint Sebastian from the 7th century.

This just really cracked me up. A perfectly good solid marble holy water font, with a glass water bowl in the center. What is up with that? Was the priest to lazy to walk to the font to bless the water? So I ran over to check the other one...

Yup, same deal. Glass water bowl. I would give my dog water from a bowl like that. I mean, ditch the bowls; keep the holy water fonts!

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