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Santa Maria Assunta al Tufello

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Santa Maria Assunta al Tufello is a modern parish church at Via Monte Massico 14, in the suburb of Tufello which is part of the Monte Sacro district. Pictures of the church on Wikimedia Commons. [1]

The dedication is to the Blessed Virgin Mary, specifically as regards her Assumption .


It was designed by Tullio Rossi, and completed in 1950. Architecturally, it is one of Rossi's less ambitious projects, being a simple rectangular brick box with a pitched roof and an external arch-shaped apse slightly longer than a semi-circle. The side walls have rectangular windows high up.

The windowless gabled façade is extremely simple. It is painted in a pale greenish yellow, and has a pair of large incised motifs flanking the door which consist of a vertical rectangle surmounted by a square. The composition is saved from complete banality by the large round-headed mosaic above the door of Christ the King in a Byzantine style, seated on a throne with a royal blue background and zig-zag edging in red and sky blue. The royal blue and zig-zag are continued in a thin strip down to the ground either side of the door. On the door lintel is a brief dedicatory inscription, and in the gable is a stone-carved copy of the coat-of-arms of Pope Pius XII.


There are no aisles. The plain walls are painted in white with a hint of pink, and the windows have clear glass. The roof is open, with wooden longitudinal rafters and transverse trusses. The interest lies in the presbyterium, which is in a flat-roofed apse (there is no triumphal arch). Either side of the aperture is a square pilaster in what at least looks like grey granite, with derivative capitals charmingly ornamented with putti. Four more pilasters in the same style decorate the apse wall. The altar is a shrine in the Classical style, with a pair of grey granite Corinthian columns having gilded capitals and supporting an entablature. The painting within is of the Assumption of Our Lady, and looks 19th century in style. On the apse walls either side of the altar are eight figurative mosaics in the Byzantine style depicting New Testament scenes.

The pulpit or ambo is of yellow-veined marble, and displays the symbols of the four Evangelists in bronze. There are two tabernacles, the original traditional one on the altar and an interesting one by the right-hand presbyterium pilaster which is designed like a large sunburst monstrance. The font is octagonal, in white marble inlaid on one side with pale green and yellow marbles in a faintly Baroque way. The charming holy-water stoup has four bronze cherubs frolicking all over it, and the Stations of the Cross are high quality paintings of the historical-realistic style.

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