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Basilica di Santa Sabina, Rome

(4.7/5 based on 180 reviews on the web)
The Basilica of Saint Sabina is a historical church on the Aventine Hill in Rome, Italy. It is a titular minor basilica and mother church of the Roman Catholic Order of Preachers, better known as the Dominicans. Santa Sabina is perched high above the Tiber river to the north and the Circus Maximus to the east. It is next to small public park Giardino degli Aranci, which has a scenic terrace overlooking Rome. It is a short distance to the headquarters of the Knights of Malta.Santa Sabina is the oldest extant Roman basilica in Rome that preserves its original colonnaded rectangular plan and architectural style. Its decorations have been restored to their original restrained design. Other basilicas, such as Santa Maria Maggiore, are often heavily and gaudily decorated. Because of its simplicity, the Santa Sabina represents the crossover from a roofed Roman forum to the churches of Christendom. Its Cardinal Priest is Jozef Tomko. It is the stational church for Ash Wednesday.
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  • A pleasant diversion on a stroll up the Aventine reveals this ancient and stripped back basilica, contrasting the extravagance of St Peter's and Santa Maria.  more »
  • The basilica of Santa Sabina is located on the edge of the Aventine, facing the Tiber River, in an area where the continuity of settlements is attested since Roman times. The excavations below the basilica have highlighted various archaeological remains which was made into much of the bare material used in the construction of the Church. It was founded by Peter of Illyria (Dalmatian priest) in 425 a.d., during the pontificate of Celestine I and completed in 432 under Sixtus III, on the site formerly occupied by the "titulus Sabinae", using the ancirano marble white columns 24 belonging to the "Temple of Juno Regina" which stood nearby. It seems that the "titulus" was built on the site of the domus of Sabina, Roman noblewoman (later Saint), wife of Senator Valentino, who was sentenced to be beheaded, a convert to Christianity, by the prefect Elpidio in 120 ad. the House remains inside, leaning against the right wall, a column of granite. The early Christian basilica in the 9th century by order of alberic II was incorporated in the ramparts fora because of the privileged position that allowed her to dominate the area below and part of the River Tiber. Later became a fortified residence of some noble families, Chari before and Savelli after. The Bell Tower was built in 1222 and cloister, after in 1219 St. Dominic, founder of the Dominican order, he moved from San Sisto in here, with his brothers, and here he lived and worked, so much so that his cell, converted into a chapel, is still open. The Church was restored in 1587 by Domenico Fontana by order of Pope Sixtus V: on this occasion were radically transformed medieval aspects of the Church. In 1643 was further restored by Francesco Borromini and Antonio Muñoz in 1938, on Commission of the Dominican order, in which the Church was restored to its former medieval appearance, removing Baroque superstructures. The Church has no facade because it was incorporated into the foyer. The main entrance is closed by a door of gopher wood, dating from the fifth century, which is the oldest example of early Christian sculpture. Originally consisted of 28 frames, but 18 of them left, among which there is the one depicting the crucifixion, which is the oldest known depiction of this event. The Interior of the building is characterized by lightness and harmony de its constructive elements and ornamental. Longitudinal plan building and no transept, has three naves divided by two rows of twelve fluted marble columns with Corinthian capitals. Above the arches, along the length of the nave, there is a coating of marble, made by the technique of opus sectile, pretending a brick wall. In correspondence of the capitals there are "insigna" stylized military. Their symbolic meaning is obvious: Christ and the Christian faith triumph in the Roman Empire. Above the entrance portal is the wall across the width of a band decorated in mosaic indicating, with its inscription and depiction of two matrons with the new and the Old Testament, that the origins of the Christian Church are born from the conversion of the pagans and Jews. The ground floor is cosmatesque, anywhere there are tombstones. In the basin of the apse a fresco by Taddeo Zuccari in 1569 depicts Christ while preaching on Mount surrounded by his disciples and saints whose relics are venerated in the Church (martyrs Sabina, Serapia, Deadlyalliance786, Alessandro and theodulus). Are very nice also the frescoed chapels of Saint hyacinth and Saint Catherine, example of baroque classicism. On the altar was placed a painting created in 1643 by Giovanbattista Salvi told il Sassoferrato depicting the Virgin of the Rosary on a throne flanked by Saint Dominic and Saint Catherine. This masterpiece of Sassoferrato well represents the change of the painting of ' 600 culminating with the work of Bernini. If the figure of the Virgin is reminiscent of the beautiful Madonnas by Raphael, the figure of Saint Catherine moves already as one of Bernini's works. The Basilica of Santa Sabina still offers one of the most ancient, rare and superb examples of Christian architecture in the early centuries. Finally remembers the cloister, one of the most beautiful in Rome: very large and rectangular, presents galleries divided into bays by square brick pillars. The bays, seven on the long sides and six in the short sides consist of four small arches supported by marble columns. The Church are related two curious stories. The imagery of the Roman people gave rise to the belief that the ancient basilica, as all churches on pagan temples, was targeted by Devils. Shortly after entering, in the left corner on a column, there is a black basalt stone oval with three holes, known as la bomba di San Domenico. According to tradition, the stone was thrown by a Satan raged against Dominic, founder of the Dominican order, who used to pray over a tomb-altar which contained the bones of some martyrs. The stone struck the sarcophagus and you can still see the holes caused by the flaming finger of the devil. Actually the stone is probably a Roman scale weight or a Mill Grinder found in the basement of the Church. The second curiosity is as follows: in the cloister of s. Domenico 1200 is orange, the first Orange, according to tradition, brought to Rome by Portugal in 1216 by Dominic himself. This Orange is considered a miracle because after centuries continued to bear fruit through other trees born again on the original, once dried.
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  • Santa Sabina has some beautiful interior details: a wooden gateway, a figure a mosaic on the floor, the choir and the altar. Not much more. Very private and treated the district around!
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  • Great church with very interesting medieval decorations on the inside!
  • Beautiful ancient church with a very cool view of Rome in the park beside it.
  • Espetacular
  • Both the architecture and the decorations are interesting and nice. Don't miss the 18 original 5th century carved wooden panels on the outside of the side gate.
  • Headquarters of the Dominican Order.