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San Giuliano ai Monti

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San Giuliano ai Monti was a 13th century convent church that used to stand at what is now the north-west corner of the Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II in the rione Esquilino, on the west corner of Via Carlo Alberto and opposite the Trofei di Mario.

The dedication is to St Julian the Hospitaller.

HistoryEdit

The little convent was the first foundation of the Carmelite order in Rome, and was established just before 1220. This was even before the new order of friars had received Papal approval, in 1242.

However the convent only had accommodation for six friars, and hence was of little immediate use to the order later in the Middle Ages as it grew in numbers and influence. There was a restoration under Pope Nicholas V (1447-55), and a tradition grew up of a special blessing of holy water on 7 August for use by those suffering from malaria.

In 1675 the church was given over to a Confraternity of Innkeepers and Coachdrivers (Confraternita degli Albergatori e Vetturali, and then the convent was later occupied by the Redemptorists after their foundation in 1749.

After the French occupation, the complex was in private hands until 1848 when it was bought by a princess of the Odescalchi family who established a small community of "Polish" (Ukrainian?) Basilian monks there. Unfortunately this meant that the property fell under the law of sequestration of all convents by the Italian government in 1873.

It was demolished only a year later, when the present grid of streets was laid out as part of the massive suburban development of what was open countryside until then.

LocationEdit

There used to be an important road junction here before 1874, with a street running from Santa Maria Maggiore to the Trofei di Mario and roads branching off from there to the Lateran, Porta Maggiore, Santa Croce and Santa Bibiana. The church was on the corner of the first one listed, the Via di San Matteo.

The direct road to Santa Bibiana was lost completely when the present street layout was formed.

The façade faced that of the church of Sant'Eusebio, and the north-west side walls of the two churches aligned. The site is now under the roadway just south-west of the junction of Via Carlo Alberto with Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II. The pedestrian crossing there, leading to the gardens, is on the line of the façade.

AppearanceEdit

A report of 1662 mentioned that the church had only one altar, a campanile over the sacristy and that the Carmelites had been burying their dead under the floor.

The Nolli map of 1748 shows a small edifice on a rectangular plan with three bays, the third being the sanctuary and the second extended into a large side chapel on the left hand side. Presumably this was added by the confraternity.

The convent had two blocks joined in the form of an L, with the main block along the streetfront to the right of the church and the subsidiary wing running back at the far end. There was a small garden beyond the courtyard at the back, but no proper cloister.

External linksEdit

Italian Wikipedia page

Nolli map (look for 36)

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