Tuesday, May 1, 2018


In 1439 a hospice for Portuguese pilgrims was founded here with the financial contribution of Cardinal Antonio Martinez de Chaves
In 1539 the church of the hospice was dedicated to St. Anthony of Padua (1195/1231). In Portugal, where he was born and raised, he is known as St. Anthony of Lisbon
It was rebuilt in the years 1630/38 by Martino Longhi the Younger (1602/60) who designed the FAÇADE, the first job he ever did. He directed the works until 1657
The reconstruction continued in the years 1674/76 with Carlo Rainaldi (1611/91) who finished the DOME
The works were completed in 1696 by Cristoforo Schor (1655/1701) who finished Longhi's façade
It is the Portuguese national church
The outer gate of 1869 was designed by Francesco Vespignani (1842/99)
“We don't have documentary sources that allow us to understand the character of the ancient church before the seventeenth century renovation also because, with the sack of Rome in 1527, the archives of the church were devastated. However, an engraving by Girolamo Francino reproduces the fifteenth century façade showing decorative simplicity. (...) A map of Rome in 1551, designed by Leonardo Bufalini, shows the church plant. The building had a semicircular apse, no transept and the space of the nave was marked by two rows of columns. During 2005, on the initiative of the members of the Portuguese Institute, the right side of the church was studied and, under the plaster of the new construction, walls of the fifteenth century church were revealed. Due to these findings, it was demonstrated that the changes undergone by the church over time did not affect the structure of the perimeter wall of the nave, but took on from the previously existing building” (Agnese Iori - Web site of S. Antonio dei Portoghesi - www.ipsar.org)
Painted in the second half of 1800 by the master glassmaker Antonio Moroni (1825/86), who promoted the revival of the ancient art of stained glass
“Apparition of the Crucifix to Alfonso Enrico first king of Portugal” by an unknown nineteenth century artist with a style similar to the one of Ludovico Seitz
Extraordinary “Choir” made in 1748 maybe by Gabriele Valvassori (1683/1761) with “Mascioni pipe organ” 2008 by Jean Guillou (1930)
Above the altar “Sts. Catherine, Engrazia and Irene martyrs of Alexandria” by an unknown artist of the beginning of the seventeenth century with a style similar to the one of Guido Reni
On the right “Monument of Alessandro De Souza Holstein” Portuguese ambassador to the Holy See 1808 by Antonio Canova (1757/1822)
Designed after 1682 by Cesare Crovara (active since 1682/d. 1703) for G.B. Cimini (d. 1682) and his wife Caterina Raimondi (d. 1703) represented in the “Two marble portraits” on the sides maybe by Andrea Fucigna (about 1660/1711)
“The bust of G.B. Cimini, incorrectly assigned to Andrea Bolgi, (...), was inspired for the cut of the image and for being into a niche in the wall with no tomb, by the image of Gabriel Fonseca by Gian Lorenzo Bernini. The poignant religiosity of the prototype, however, becomes just an emanation of emotion manifested with composure in Cimini, whose features are expressed with moderate realism. While Cimini's bust is well comparable to the works of Fucigna documented with certainty in the early eighteenth century, such as the tomb of Eleonora Boncompagni Borghese in S. Alessio, that of Caterina Raimondi, made about twenty years later, is stylistically very different, much more rigid and cold” (Maria Barbara Guerrieri Borsoi - Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani Treccani)
Altarpiece “Baptism of Christ”, lunettes “Beheading” and “Holy Family” and small dome with “Eternal Father” by Giacinto Calandrucci (1646/1707) from Palermo, a pupil of Carlo Maratta
On the left “Nativity of St. John the Baptist” 1682/86 by the French François Nicolas de Bar aka Nicolas Lorrain or Niccolò Lorenese (1632/95)
On the right “Preaching of St. John the Baptist” by Francesco Graziani aka Ciccio Napoletano
Above the altar “St. Elizabeth Queen of Portugal in the act of reconciling her husband with the son” 1801 by Luigi Agricola (about 1750/after 1801)
Altar designed by Francesco Navone (active since 1759/d. 1804)
Work of Cristoforo Schor (1655/1701) who also designed the apse
Coating in marble and balustrade 1774 by Francesco Navone
Altarpiece “Apparition of the Virgin Mary to St. Anthony” by Giacinto Calandrucci (1646/1707)
On the left wall “Blessed Teresa and Sancia of Portugal” by Giovanni Odazzi (1663/1731)
On the right wall “The Blessed Joan of Portugal refuses the Regal Wedding” by Michelangelo Cerruti (1663/1748)
PENDENTIVES “Sts. Mancio, Geraldo, Damaso and Victor” and ROUND PANELS “Blessed Sancia, Mafalda, Giovanna and Teresa” by Francesco Grandi (1831/91)
1754/56 designed by Luigi Vanvitelli (1700/73) with works conducted by his assistant Carlo Murena (1713/64)
Above the altar “Immaculate” by Giacomo Zoboli (1681/1767)
At the sides extraordinary “Double tomb of the Ambassador Emanuel Pereira de Sampajo” with grave on the right and coat of arms on the left 1750 maybe by Pietro Bracci (1700/73) or Filippo Della Valle (1698/1768) designed by Luigi Vanvitelli
Stuccos “Charity” and “Purity” on the entablature by Gaspare Sibilla (about 1723/82)
Designed by Francesco Navone (active since 1759/d. 1804)
Altarpiece “Nativity” 1792, on the right “Rest in Egypt” 1782, on the left “Adoration of the Magi” all works by Antonio Concioli (1739/1820) from the Marche region
Above the altar “Madonna and Child with Sts. Anthony of Padua and Francis” panel with gold background by Antonio Aquili aka Antoniazzo Romano (about 1435-40/1508)
On the right “Pieta” copy of a painting by Pellegrino Aretusi
In the vault “Miracle of St. Anthony of Padua” maybe by Salvatore Nobili (1865/1919)
Paintings formerly in the church and moved here
“St. Anthony with Child Jesus” by Marcello Venusti originally on the main altar
“Annunciation” by Domenico Crespi aka Passignano (1559/1638)
“Sts. Anthony, Sebastian and Vincent of Saragossa” by Gaetano Sortini (1715/86)

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