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Santa Barbara nel Castello della Castelluccia

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Santa Barbara nel Castello della Castelluccia is a 13th century (?) rural chapel in an old farmstead at Via Carlo Cavina 40, which is in a rural location south-east of the Via Cassia near La Giustiniana. It is just north of a farming hamlet called El Centro.

This chapel is in the municipality of Rome, but belongs to the diocese of Porto Santa Rufina.

The dedication is to St Barbara.

History Edit

The farmstead has a long history, and might have replaced an earlier Roman villa. The core of the present complex, including the prominent fortified Torre della Castelluccia, is thought to date from around 1200. For most of its history, it was known as the Casale della Castelluccia. A casale was a fortified farmstead, able to offer some limited protection from marauders and they used to be a feature of the Roman campagna.

The present chapel was at least re-fitted if not rebuilt in the early 16th century.

The complex is now a luxury hotel called the Castello della Castelluccia, and the chapel is being used principally for weddings. It is unclear as to whether any other liturgical activities occur here, although the chapel is still consecrated.

Appearance Edit

The little edifice has a rectangular plan, with a 16th century wooden nave ceiling having rectangular coffers bounded by beams and with each containing a yellow stucco rosette on a white background. The sanctuary has no ceiling, and the open roof has a single transverse truss.

The altar stands on a fragment of a spirally fluted ancient column (demonstrating the suspicion that there was an ancient villa on the site).

The most interesting feature of the chapel is a floating gallery over the sanctuary, with an ornate iron balustrade rail. On the wall on the back of this is a fresco of St Barbara.

External links Edit

Info.roma web-page

Hotel website

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