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S. Eustachio (Book 6) (Day 4) (View C6) (Rione Sant'Eustachio)

In this page:
The plate by Giuseppe Vasi
Today's view
S. Eustachio
Universita' della Sapienza
Palazzo Cenci Maccarani
Palazzo Medici Lante
Coat of arms of Pius IV (Palazzo Tizio da Spoleto)

The Plate (No. 113)

The Church of S. Eustachio

The plate is dedicated to the church of S. Eustachio, but Vasi takes the opportunity to show the spiral of St Yves', the chapel of the old
University della Sapienza (sapienza=wisdom). The view is taken from the green dot in the small 1748 map here below. In the description below the plate Vasi made reference to: 1) Palazzo Cenci; 2) Dome of S. Ivo alla Sapienza; 3) Collegio della Sapienza; 4) Piazza S. Eustachio. 2) and 3) are also shown in other pages. The small map shows also: 5) Palazzo Tizio da Spoleto; 6) S. Eustachio.

Small ViewSmall View


Today

The View today

The area is untouched since Vasi's time. As usual Vasi enlarged the street and rearranged the perspective in order to better show the elements of the plate.

The Church

The Church

The church gives the name to the quarter (rione). The deer on the roof and on the capital refers to the legend of this saint who was converted by having seen a deer with a cross on the head. The bell tower goes back to the XIIth century while the church was almost totally rebuilt between 1701 and 1730 mainly on the basis of a project by Giovan Battista Contini (the head of the deer was criticized for looking like a donkey's head).

The University

The University

The University of La Sapienza was founded in the XVth century and the front was completed by Giacomo Della Porta under Sixtus V. Francesco Borromini decorated the side shown on this plate and built the spiral under Urbanus VIII and his successors. Here you can see some details such as the very unusual curved decoration.

Palazzo Cenci Maccarani

Palazzo Cenci

Palazzo Cenci was built by Giulio Romano in 1520-24 in a Florentine Renaissance style. It is close to Palazzo Madama, and it is now used by the Senate of the Republic. It is also called Palazzo di Brazz or Palazzo Maccarani.

Palazzo Medici Lante

Palazzo Lante

Next to Palazzo Cenci, Palazzo Lante (which once belonged to pope Leo X Medici) is attributed to Giuliano da Sangallo. The reliefs below the windows show a lion's head, a reference to the pope and three ostrich feathers, a heraldic symbol of the Medici. Other reliefs show the oak of the Della Rovere family as the Lante inherited through marriage a building adjoining the palace which had belonged to cardinal Giuliano della Rovere (pope Julius II 1503-13).

The Coat of arms of Pius IV

The coat of arms of Pius IV

The plate shows on the left an elegant small building, decorated with frescoes. The faade on the piazza shows the coat of arms of Pius IV and between the windows of the top floor the miracle of the vision of the deer (by Federico Zuccari). Renaissance palaces were very often painted (see also Palazzo Ricci and Palazzo della Maschera d'Oro).

Excerpts from Giuseppe Vasi 1761 Itinerary related to this page:


Chiesa di s. Eustachio
Questa si crede edificata in tempo di Costantino Magno nel luogo del martirio di questo santo Cavaliere Romano. Fu dipoi ristaurata l'anno 1196. da Celestino III. il quale pose sotto l'altare maggiore i corpi di s. Eustachio, di sua moglie, e de' suoi figliuoli tutti martiri, ed essendo ultimamente la chiesa riedificata di nuovo, dal Cardinale Neri Corsini Diacono della medesima, sono stati collocati entro una preziosa urna di porfido ornata di metalli dorati, posta sotto il nobilissimo altare di mezzo fatto dal medesimo. I1 santo Titolare nell'altare maggiore opera del Muratori, il s. Girolamo, e la Visitazione negli altari laterali sono di Giacomo Zoboli. notabile, che in questa chiesa fu battezzato l'an. 15*7. il grande Alessandro Farnese gran Capitano delle Fiandre.
La piazza, che si apre dinanzi alla detta chiesa, sebbene non sia molto grande, ella sempre piena di ogni sorta di viveri, e cos seguita ad unirsi con quella della Rotonda.
Palazzo Lanti, e Cenci
Il palazzo Cenci, che si vede su questa piazza nobile architettura di Giulio Romano, e quello, che gli sta accanto il palazzo Lanti molto grande e cospicuo, ora notabilmente rimodernato, ed ornato nel cortile con statue e busti antichi.

Next plate in Book 6: S. Lucia alle Botteghe oscure
Next step in Day 4 itinerary: S. Maria in Monterone
Next step in your tour of Rione Sant'Eustachio: Piazza de' Crescenzi



Go to or to Book 6 or to The Coats of Arms of the Popes or to My Home Page on Baroque Rome or to My Home Page on Rome in the footsteps of an XVIIIth century traveller


All images © 1999 - 2003 by Roberto Piperno. Write to romapip@quipo.it