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Santa Maria dei Foglianti

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Santa Maria dei Foglianti was a very small convent and devotional church that used to stand on the east corner of the junction between Via Rasella and Via del Boccaccio, north of the Quirinal Palace and in the rione Trevi.

The dedication was to the Blessed Virgin Mary.

HistoryEdit

It was erected by the Feuillants, a French reformed Cistercian congregation, in1629. This accounts for the name Foglianti; it derives ultimately from the Latin folium or leaf. According to Armellini, the tiny convent was the residence of the Procuratore or representative of the congregation at Rome, and was the responsibility of the abbey of St Bernard in Paris (commonly known as the Eglise des Feuillants). This arrangement was necessary because the congregation had separarated from the Cistercian Order, and was independently administered. The abbey of San Bernardo alle Terme on the other side of the Quirinal also belonged to this congregation.

The church contained a venerated icon of the Madonna and Child, and hence also functioned as a devotional chapel. It was already also known as Santa Maria della Neve in 1748, and was already being used by theConfraternity of Our Lady of the Snows based at Santa Maria Maggiore.

The Feuillants were suppressed in the French Revolution in 1791, and the little church was taken over by the confraternity. However it was demolished during the French occupation, about 1810. The confraternity moved as a result to what is now Santa Maria della Neve al Colosseo; the two churches are confused in some sources.

LocationEdit

Where the Via del Boccaccio joins the Via Rasella, there is a little piazza made by setting back the street frontage of the latter street. On the east side of the junction is the Hotel de Petrus, which has a round-headed doorway facing the Via Rasella. This is on the line of the façade of the church, which occupied this frontage.

AppearanceEdit

The church has a plan based on a very short rectangle, almost square but slightly longer on the major axis. There was no apse. The ceiling vault was supported by a pair of pilasters on each side wall.

The small convent occuped a single range on the east side of the piazza, and running up the right hand side of the church. There was a small garden behind the latter.

External linksEdit

Nolli map (look for 221)

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