On the Tiber Island, between Rione Trastevere and the Jewish Quarter, stands the thousand-year-old church of San Bartolomeo all'Isola, built at the end of the 10th century by the will of Emperor Otto III on an ancient temple dedicated to Aesculapius, god of medicine.
Initially dedicated to Sant'Adalberto, it was the subject of numerous restoration works between the 11th and 12th centuries.
Irreparably damaged by a flood of the Tiber in 1557, the sacred building was rebuilt in the 17th century by the architect Orazio Torriani. Externally, San Bartolomeo all'Isola has a Baroque façade on two floors and a Portico; internally, it presents three naves supported by ancient columns. In the church are kept the remains of Saint Bartholomew the Apostle, whose body rests in the red porphyry sarcophagus under the high altar, and those of Saint Adalbert, bishop of Prague, killed in 997, while intent on evangelizing the pagan populations of Northern Europe.
Among the most captivating works you can admire in the church, we mention the Flagellation of Christ, a painting by Antonio Carracci (1589-1618), grandson of Hannibal.
The church is also known to be the seat of the "Venerable Brotherhood of devotees of Jesus Christ on Calvary and Mary Most Holy of Sorrows," a congregation founded on the initiative of a group of faithful in 1760. The brotherhood obtained permission from Pope Pius VI Braschi to create a cemetery for the deceased brothers in the basement. During the burial, the followers wore a red cloak with a hood that earned them the popular name of Sacconi Rossi. They recovered the corpses found in the Tiber whose bones they defleshed and then laid in the crypt of the convent that became a cemetery like the most famous crypt of the Capuchins in Via Veneto.
For the timetable of the masses and visiting conditions, please consult the contacts.
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