Palazzo Colonna, Basilica of the Twelve Holy Apostles

Palazzo Colonna, Basilica dei Santi Apostoli

The Palazzo Colonna is one of the most ancient palaces of Rome. For more than 20 generations is has been property of the Colonna family. Its first historical mentioning dates back to the 13th century. The construction process took long five centuries reflecting different historical periods in the architecture of the palace. In 1527 during the Sack of Rome by the troops of Charles V, the palace provided refuge for many Roman citizens. In the 17th century the palace turned into a Baroque creation thanks to the efforts of Girolamo Rainaldi and Paolo Marucelli, the main façades were designed by Antonio Del Grande and Girolamo Fontana. In 1703 the Gallery was constructed to exhibit the family's arts collection that includes masterpieces of Italian and world's greatest artists of all time - Tintoretto, Domenico Ghirlandaio, Francesco Salviati, Pietro da Cortona, Annibale Carracci, Guercino, Albani and Guido Reni.

The Basilica of Santi Apostoli constitutes a part of the Colonna palace as a family church. The construction of the Basilica (560 AD) is believed to be connected with the liberation of Rome from Ostrogoths. During the temple's construction materials from the Baths of Constantine were used. Pope Martin V, whose family owned the Palazzo Colonna decided to return the church to life after it was heavily damaged. So the temple was rebuilt in Baroque style by Francesco and Carlo Fontana. The interior of the church preserves a number of valuable works of art: the painted Baroque ceiling depicting the Triumph of the Order of Saint Francis by Baciccio, the Ecstasy of Saint Joseph of Cupertino canvas by Giuseppe Cade, gravestones of Pope Clement XIV (Canova's first work in Rome) and Cardinal Pietro Riario, as well as the sarcophagus of Cardinal and humanitarian Bessarion of Nicaea, a crypt with relics of Saint James and Apostle Philip, etc.

Address: Piazza dei Santi Apostoli, 66 - palace, Piazza dei Santi Apostoli, 51 - basilica
Opening hours: palace Sat 9 am – 1.15 pm, other days reservation in advance required
Coordinates: 41.898079, 12.483226