Basilica of Saints Cosmas and Damian

Basilica dei Santi Cosma e Damiano

Basilica of Saints Cosmas and Damian is the old Christian church in Rome built by the order of Pope Felix IV. In 527 the daughter of Theodoric the Great, king of the Ostrogoths, Amalasuntha, donated the library of the Forum of Peace and a portion of the pagan Temple of Romulus built in 307 by emperor Maxentius to the Pope. The Temple of Romulus was dedicated by emperor Maxentius to his deceased son Valerius Romulus. The pope united the two buildings to create a basilica devoted to two Greek brothers and saints, Cosmas and Damian. They were worshiped for the miraculous healing that they performed to the glory of the God during their lifetimes and afterwards. Holy Martyrs Cosmas and Damian lived in Rome in the III century during the persecutions of Christians. They combined their physician practice with preaching. The saints used to say to their patients: "It is not our power that heals the illness but the power of Christ, our true God. Accept Christ by faith and you will be healed".

The brothers were martyred outside Rome by a jealous pagan physician who used to be their teacher. He called his once truelove followers to collect herbs in the mountains and killed them there throwing the bodies into the river. During the reconstruction works in 1947 scientists made a conclusion that the Temple of Romulus built during the reign of emperor Maxentius is the best preserved pagan temple on the territory of Rome. Inside the church visitors can enjoy the beautiful mosaic of the VI century picturing the Second Coming of Christ.

Address: Foro Romano, Via dei Fori Imperiali, 1
Opening hours: daily 9 am – 1 pm, 3 pm – 6.50 pm
How to reach: Colosseo
Coordinates: 41.891991, 12.487257