Santa Maria della Scala

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(To see photos of the chapels on the left side click here)

(To see photos of the chapels on the right side click here)

Santa Maria della Scala is an early 17th century titular church, found in the Trastevere neighborhood. The dedication is to the Blessed Virgin Mary, under her special local title of "Our Lady of the Staircase”.

For reference, a plan of the church is available here.


The church was built between 1593-1610 to house an icon of the Madonna, which had originally been placed on the landing of a staircase in a nearby private house, the Casa Pia. A deformed child whose mother often prayed before the image was cured in 1592, and the church was built in response to the veneration of the people that resulted.

The project was initiated by Pope Clement VIII in 1593, together with Cardinal Tolomeo Galli who was patron of the Casa Pia. They chose Francesco Capriani da Volterra as the architect. Unfortunately, Capriani died in the following year after having completed the nave and side chapels. Girolamo Rainaldi was the replacement architect. The façade was completed in 1624 to the design of Ottaviano Mascherino.

In 1597 the unfinished church was entrusted to the administration of the Discalced Carmelites, who are still in charge, and as a result many of the artworks have Carmelite themes.

Related Links: from Roman Churches Wiki
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Location: 41° 53' 28"N 12° 28' 5"E

Additional information and description

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