Church of Santa Prisca

"Church of Santa Prisca" submitted by RomeTour Editorial Team and last updated on Sunday 3rd July 2011

The Church of Santa Prisca (Chiesa di S.Prisca) was erected in the end of the 4th century-beginning of the 5th century on the site of the House of Aquila and Prisca, celebrated husband and wife, who hosted St Peter in their "ecclesia domestica" where apostle baptized different people. The dedication to S.Prisca could be attributed to two personalities: the owner of the house and a 13 years old virgin martyr, who was considered a daughter of Aquila and Prisca.
Church of Santa Prisca at Piazza di Santa Prisca entrance of Church of Santa Prisca. facade of Church of Santa Prisca at Via di Santa Prisca
It was destroyed by Normans and reconstructed by Pascal II. In the 15th century the fire forced monks Benedictines to abandon it. Pope Callistus III restored the church and assigned it to the Domenicans of another church of S.Sabina in 1445. In the beginning of the 17th century cardinal Benedetto Giustiniani had it transformed in baroque forms.

The interior presents a plan with three naves delimited by two rows of seven Ionian columns, which are embodied into seventeenth-century pilasters. To the right is the baptismal tub where, according to tradition, San Pietro baptized Santa Prisca.

The interior is on basilican plan with a nave separated from aisles by 14 columns. The painting decorations by Passignano and A.Fontebuoni, have nothing in common with the original paleo-Christian character of the church. The facade is by Carlo Lombardi and was executed in the beginning of the 17th century. The doorway is bordered by two ancient columns.

The excavations beneath the church discovered the Clivo Publicio, the main road, which crossed the Aventine Hill, and the rests of some ancient constructions that are thought to be the private residence of Trajan or other personalities. But the most important monument found is Mitreo (mithraeum), with frescoes and a statue of Mithras slaying the Bull.

The excavations that began in 1934 have led to the retrieval of a Roman house from C. I, probably where Aquila and Priscilla, parents to the Saint, used to live, and a Mithraeum dating back to C.II. The church’s crypt (C.IX - X) houses the relics of Santa Prisca.

Address:
Valle Murcia (Via del Circo Massimo)
Via di Santa Prisca, 11 (Piazza di Santa Prisca)
00153, Rome, Lazio, Italy
Zone: Rione San Saba (Piramide) (Roma centro)
Church of Santa Prisca is Shown By "Map K Zone" As "53"
Hours: Open 08:30am-12:00pm 04:30pm-06:30pm. Masses: Weekdays:08:00am-06:00pm (winter)-07:00pm (summer), Holidays:08:00am-10:30am (winter)-11:00am (summer)-12:00pm (winter)-06:00pm (winter)-07:00pm (summer).
Telephone: 0039 06 5743798
Fax: 0039 06 5743798
Email: s.pr...@tiscalinet.it
Website: http://web.tiscalinet.it/SantaPrisca/

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