Santa Sabina all'Aventino

(Click on any photo to see a larger version)

EXTg5384 EXTj9173 EXTa4562 EXTk6248 EXTe6248
EXTh9146 EXTf8426 EXTb1973 EXTc7139 EXTd4682
1f462873 1b951753 1a789123 1d456852 1e912846 1c179382

Narthex
3j765834 3b756423 3h078654 3c657456 3f870564
3e768123 3k980675 3g546984 3a248697

Nave
4a479613 4b826473 4c579315 4e198246 4f791346 4d482673
5a462873 4g852456 4p753159 lc824673 lb951753

Sanctuary
6f482619 6e468271 6d468273 6a456852 6c789632

(To see photos of the left aisle and chapel click here)
(To see photos of the right aisle and chapel click here)

(To see photos of the cloister click here)

Santa Sabina all'Aventino has the dignity of a minor basilica. It is attached to the General Curia or headquarters of the Dominican order. Santa Sabina lies high on the Aventine Hill, in rione Ripa, next to the Tiber River and close to the headquarters of the Knights of Malta. The dedication is to St Sabina, a legendary 2nd century martyr.

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

History

The church was built in the 5th century, possibly on the site of the original Titulus Sabinae, traditionally the home of St Sabina. In the 9th century Pope Eugenius II remodelled the litergical arrangements, providing a schola cantorum, an iconostasis and a pair of ambones or pulpits, decorated the walls with paintings, and set up a silver altar canopy. In the high altar he placed the relics of Sts. Alexander, Theodulus and Eventius. In 1219, the church was given by Pope Honorius III to Saint Dominic, for his new order, the Order of Preachers, now commonly known as the Dominicans. Since then, it has been their headquarters.

The Dominicans restored the basilica, equipping it with a cloister with arches and a high bell tower, which was then rebuilt in the 17th century. During the 13th century the church underwent numerous changes and the Cosmatesque floor was also put in place. In 1441 Cardinal Giuliano Cesarini not only renovated the basilica, but he also built a porch (loggia) to shelter a doorway leading into the right aisle at the southwest end of the building. In 1460 the basilica was further restored and equipped with a portico in front of the entrance.

In 1586, Pope Sixtus V commissioned Domenico Fontana to bring the interior of the church up to date. The schola cantorum, ambones and iconostasis were demolished, the mosaic in the apse was removed. In the 20th century, most of these post-mediaeval alterations and additions made by Fontana were removed by Antonio Muñoz to restore the church back to what was believed to be its original state.

Related Links: Roman Churches Wiki
Wikipedia
I Viaggi di Raffaella blog
Corvinus web site

Location: 41° 53' 4.2"N 12° 28' 47.3"E

Detailed information

If you have any comments, questions, suggestions or corrections, please contact me here
Copyright Skip Conde 2012-2021