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Santa Maria del Rosario ai Martiri Portuensi

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Santa Maria del Rosario ai Martiri Portuensi is a modern parish church at Via Chiusdino 16, at the west end of the suburb of Magliana, part of the Portuense suburban district just north of the Via Portuense.


It replaces the church of Santa Maria del Rosario di Pompeii alla Magliana, which used to be the parish church after the parish was established in 1915.

The parish is administered by the “Priestly Confraternity of the Missionaries of St Charles Borromeo” (Fraternità Sacerdotale dei Missionari di San Carlo Borromeo).

The church has a double dedication, to Our Lady of the Rosary and the Portuensian Martyrs. The Martiri Portuensi were SS Simplicius, Faustinus, Beatrice and Rufus. They were martyred about the year 300, and buried in the catacombs of Generosa. Their alleged sarcophagus is preserved in the sacristy of Santa Maria Maggiore. The catacombs themselves are on the Viale delle Catacombe di Generosa, north-east of the Magliana train station, and are occasionally open for guided tours. There are the ruins of the Basilica of Generosa located there.


The church was designed by Piero Sanpaolo, and completed in 2007. It is based on a basically rectangular plan, with a wide and shallow transept attached to each side and an apse with straight sides and a gentle arc to the back wall. The narthex or entrance bay is narrower than the main church.

The tall exterior walls are all in pink brick, and the roof is flat. The entrance façade has its central section bowed, with the actual entrance recessed under it. It has a large fenestration, consisting of nine vertical rectangular windows symmetrically arranged top to bottom in three horizontal lines of five, three and one . These have single panes of clear glass, with the panes curved to fit the curve of the frontage.

The campanile is attached to the left hand side of the façade. It is a rectangular brick tower, and at the top is a very large bell-cage made up from concrete beams and struts. There is a vertical row of three vertical rectangular soundholes on the short faces, and two of the same on the long faces. The bottom rectangles are taller.

On the right hand side of the façade, there is a large vertical strip widow tucked into the angle between the narthex and the main church, facing longitudinally. Similar windows are in the angles between the main nave and transepts, four in all, and in the angles between apse and the main nave. The latter face transversely, so as to throw light on the altar. On the walls of the transepts are a pair of fenestrations of the same sort of pattern as that on the façade. However, the rows are of six, four and two and the vertical line of symmetry is occupied by a zone of brickwork.


The interior walls are painted white and the windows are clear. This lack of overall colour contrasts with the apse wall, which is in a pinkish orange. The ceiling is in laminated wood, strongly coffered in squares.

External linksEdit

Official diocesan web-page

Italian Wikipedia page

Parish website

Architectural article

Confraternity website

Catacombs website

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