Saturday, November 7, 2020


Altitude 280 m (920 feet). 15,000 inhabitants

Inhabited since the time of the Etruscans, it is the most important city in the area of the Monti Sabatini

Lake Bracciano

With an area of ​​57 square kilometers (22 square miles) it is the second largest lake of the Lazio region after that of Bolsena and one of the largest in Italy

It is of volcanic origin and it has a circular perimeter of about 32 km (20 miles)

The water level is 165 m (541 feet) above sea level and its depth is equally 165 m

The water is sweet and it is a remarkable water reserve for the city of Rome

S. Stefano

Church of St. Stephan

Mentioned in the sources for the first time in 1427. It was rebuilt in 1638

FAÇADE mid-eighteenth century


"S. Jehoshaphat in the desert" maybe by Francesco Trevisani (1656/1746)


"Triptych of the Saviour" 1315


"St. Sebastian" (protector from plague and patron of Bracciano) by Giacinto Gimignani (1606/81)


"Martyrdom of St. Stephen" by Jean-Baptiste Wicar (1762/1834)


"Saints with Sixtus V and his family" maybe by Domenico Zampieri aka Domenichino (1581/1641)


"Baptism of Jesus" by an unknown pupil of Carlo Maratta and "S. Irene of Tomar" by an unknown pupil of Guercino

S. Maria Novella

Church of S. Maria Novella

Late Baroque style with annexed Augustinian CLOISTER

Inside there are various paintings by Tadeusz Kuntze aka Taddeo il Polacco (1732/93) and pupils

S. Liberato

Church of S. Liberato

IX century

Since 1374 it was home to a small monastic community

Since the fifteenth century it was owned by the Augustinians and it is currently owned by the Odescalchi family

“At the side of the building there are rooms which were used in the past as cells. Based on the analysis of the walls and the marble finds, the building is the result of alterations performed throughout the centuries. We can distinguish at least five architectural interventions between XI and XVI centuries. During the first intervention, a rectangular room was built on some remains from the Roman times, which cannot be identified anymore. Seemingly, the room was built on a crypt without apse, which could be accessed through a door, supposedly under the present entrance” (Official web site of S. Liberato –


Botanical garden of about 7 hectares (17 acres) with species from all over the world designed since 1964 by the English landscape architect Russell Page (1906/85)

Castello Orsini Odescalchi

Orsini Odescalchi Castle

Pentagonal layout

It is mentioned in the sources for the first time in 1234 as Rocca dei Prefetti di Vico (Fortress of the Prefects of Vico)

Reconstruction in about 1470/85 initiated by Napoleone Orsini and completed by his son Gentile Virginio Orsini

In 1494 here Charles VIII was a guest

In 1497 the castle was assaulted by the papal troops who occupied it in 1501

It became property of the Orsini family again in 1560 at the behest of Pope Pius IV Medici (1560/65), and here, in that same year, the wedding between Paolo Giordano Orsini and Isabella de' Medici was celebrated

On that occasion there were works directed by Jacopo Del Duca (about 1520/1604) pupil of Michelangelo

The nineteenth-century legend has it that Isabella was strangled sixteen years later by her husband for infidelity

Paolo Giordano Orsini would have found out that she had had many lovers invariably killed after having had sex with them by throwing them in a secret trap door of the castle

The letters between the couple, however, would seem to document that not only Isabella was in the castle only for very short periods, but also that she died of natural causes and that the couple loved each other very much. Other documents seem to prove the legendary story

In 1584 here Marcantonio Colonna was a guest

In 1696 the castle passed to the Odescalchi family

In 1803 it passed to the Torlonia family, then in 1848 back to the Odescalchis who still own it today

It was restored in the years 1894/99 by Raffaele Ojetti (1845/1924)

Ground Floor


Room of the Pope

Pope Sixtus IV della Rovere (1471/84) stayed in this room during the plague of Rome of 1481

In the vault frescoes "Horoscope of the spouses and emblems of the Orsini and Medici families" and "Stories of the life of Alexander the Great" 1559/60 by Taddeo Zuccari (1529/66) helped by his brother Federico Zuccari (about 1542/1609)


Room of Humbert I

The king of Italy Humbert I (1878/1900) slept in this room in the year 1900

Wooden ceiling painted in the years 1491/1500 by Antonio Aquili aka Antoniazzo Romano (about 1435-40/1508) and assistants


Room "Of Pisanello"

"Frieze with scenes of hunting and recreation" painted by unknown artists of the school of Antonio Pisano aka Pisanello (about 1390/about 1455)

Collection of seventeenth-century ceramics and portraits of members of the Odescalchi family


Room of the hunting trophies or Room the Caesars

Frescos "Gentile Virginio Orsini" and "Orsini meets Piero de' Medici" 1491 by Antonio Aquili aka Antoniazzo Romano and assistants

Busts of Roman emperors sculpted in the seventeenth century


Room of the Orsini

Busts of "Paolo Giordano Orsini II" and "Isabella de 'Medici" by Gian Lorenzo Bernini (1598/1680)

"Paolo Orsini was a versatile talent: poet, musicologist, designer. It was also a caricaturist, whose technique he learned directly from his teacher Annibale Carracci. He was a friend of Bernini, who painted a portrait of him, which for anti-rhetorical representation, for the immediacy and profound wit that animate it, it is considered one of the most successful work in the art of portraiture of all times" (Cesare D'Onofrio)


Red Room also known as Isabella’s Room

Wooden ceiling painted both by Antonio Aquili aka Antoniazzo Romano (about 1435-40/1508) and Taddeo Zuccari (1529/66) 1559/60 with "Scenes from the story of Cupid and Psyche"

"All these decorations with their quiet grace, placed in the vaults with stuccos and neat grotesque decorations, fill the room without making it look over-decorated, contrary to what happens with paintings on ceilings by Vasari. (...) The lazy natural movements of the figures shows an artist in full possession of all the means of decorative profane painting " (Hermann Voss)

Second Floor


Room of Hercules

Frieze "Labors of Hercules" painted in the fifteenth century and ARMOURY


Weapons Room

It was obtained by halving the height of the Room of the Caesars

Armours of the fifteenth and sixteenth century


Sicilian Room

Sicilian iron bed of the fifteenth century


Etruscan Room

Objects from Caere Vetus (Cerveteri) and Alsium (Palo)


Panorama on the six towers

The courtyard leads to the furnished kitchens 

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