All images © by Roberto Piperno, owner of the domain. Write to email@example.com. Text edited by Rosamie Moore.
Page revised in June 2009.
Chiesa e Monastero delle Vergini (Book 8) (Day 3) (View C7) (Rione Trevi)
In this page:
Vasi shows the street leading from Via del Corso to the Papal Palace on the Quirinale (Monte Cavallo). The area was redesigned at the time of Pope Paul V. The view is taken from the green dot in the 1748 map below. In the description below the plate Vasi made reference to: 1) Street leading to Monte Cavallo; 2) Chiesa dell'Assunzione di Maria; 3) Monastero dell'UmiltÓ. The map shows also 4) Chiesa delle Vergini; 5) Palazzo della Dataria; 6) Palazzo della Panetteria.
Today the main access to Piazza del Quirinale is from Via Nazionale and this has helped in retaining the old aspect of this part of Rione Trevi. In his etching Vasi showed a frontal view of the church and of the adjoining nunnery, but to do this he ignored the fact that these buildings were located in a rather narrow street. In 1871 the nunnery was confiscated by the Italian government and radically modified: in 1904 the church was assigned to a brotherhood devoted to S. Rita and its name was changed.
The nunnery and the church were built in 1632-34, but the fašade of the church was designed by Mattia de' Rossi later on and completed in 1696. Heads of nuns appear as decorative motif in the portal and in the interior of the church. The nuns belonged to the Augustinian order and were secluded nuns.
The North American College
Monastero dell'UmiltÓ was a Dominican nunnery which was transformed during the pontificate of Pope Pius IX into the North American Pontifical College. By reading the inscription one can learn the Latin translation of USA. In the vestibule there is a modern coat of arms with elements taken from those of Pope Pius IX and Pope Pius XII and a reference to the thirteen founding states which are represented by stars: the motto reads Firmum est cor meum (steadfast is my heart) (Pss. 57:8; 108:2). Today there is also a large and modern North American Pontifical College inside the Vatican City (see their website).
Chiesa dell' Assunzione di Maria today Chiesa dell'Umiltà
The nunnery had a church with a very interesting baroque fašade by Carlo Fontana which lost a lot when it was modified in the XIXth century; the interior of the church is very lavishly decorated, because the nunnery could rely on the income of the properties bequeathed by its founder, Francesca Baglioni Orsini; notwithstanding the dedication to Humility, all the nuns came from noble families and this contributed to the wealth of the institution.
Palazzo della Dataria
Palazzo della Dataria (chancery) was built by Pope Paul V to provide the Palace on the Quirinale with additional space where administrative activities could be performed when the Pope was there. Several popes restored and enlarged it and what we see today is mainly a XIXth century palace.
Palazzo della Panetteria (bakery) is another building near Palazzo del Quirinale. The entrance has an imposing coat of arms of Pope Clement XIII Rezzonico.
Excerpts from Giuseppe Vasi 1761 Itinerary related to this page:
Next plate in Book 8: Monastero di S. Cecilia
Next step in Day 3 itinerary: Palazzo Odescalchi
Next step in your tour of Rione Trevi: Palazzo del Quirinale