All images © by Roberto Piperno, owner of the domain. Write to firstname.lastname@example.org. Text edited by Rosamie Moore.
Page revised in November 2009.
S. Maria in Monticelli (Book 6) (Day7) (View C8) (Rione Regola)
The view shows a part of Rione Regola which, although being very close to the river, was not affected by floods, because it was located on a small mound (monticelli = small mountains).
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) S. Maria in Monticelli; 2) Palazzo del Marchese Paniza; 3) Palazzo Santacroce near S. Carlo ai Catinari. The small map also shows; 4) Case di S. Paolo and 5) S. Carlo ai Catinari.
The street shown in the left part of the plate ended at la Regola, a beach on the Tiber. The redesign of the river banks impacted on the street which is now a dead end; in 1913 the construction of a huge building housing the Ministry of Justice led to demolishing the houses opposite the church. The bell tower was built in the XIIth century and it was taller, but the two upper storeys were pulled down in the early XVIIth century; its lower part has been stripped of its XVIIIth century facing.
S. Maria in Monticelli is a very old church, but it was almost entirely rebuilt in the XIIth; in 1715 a major restoration was promoted by Pope Clement XI. The new fašade was designed by Matteo Sassi and it had a (lost) coat of arms of the pope at its top; the heraldic symbols of the pope however can be seen in some details of the decoration.
Palazzo Paniza, designed in 1694 by Simone Felice Delino is an interesting late XVIIth century
building with an elaborate relief in the portal. Vasi names it after a Marquis Paniza, but there is not such a family in the directory of the Roman noble families; the surname is typical of northern Italy, so maybe Marquis Paniza rented the building on a temporary basis.
The Santacroce were one of the oldest families of Rome; they had their houses near S. Carlo ai Catinari where they built an elegant Renaissance palace. They acquired great wealth in the late XVIth century thanks to Cardinal Prospero Santacroce who introduced the use of tobacco in the Papal State. His heirs played a major role in its merchandising and in 1598 they were able to start the construction of a large palace; it was completed in 1630-40 by Francesco Peparelli and enlarged in 1670-72 by Giovanni Antonio de' Rossi. The latter also designed an elegant small inner garden.
Case di S. Paolo
S. Maria in Monticelli is very near S. Paolo alla Regola and a group of medieval houses on the right side of the church are called Case di S. Paolo; several granite columns taken from ancient buildings were used to build their porches; they now house offices of the adjoining Ministry of Justice.
Excerpts from Giuseppe Vasi 1761 Itinerary related to this page:
Next plate in Book 6: Chiesa di S. Eustachio
Next step in Day 7 itinerary: Piazza Giudia
Next step in your tour of Rione Regola: Piazza Giudia