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Santissima Concezione della Villa di Castel Fusano is a 17th century private villa chapel in the Parco Urbano Pineta di Castel Fusano. The road that it is near is Viale Mediterraneo, and the zone is Castel Fusano.

The dedication is to the Blessed Virgin Mary, under her aspect of the Immaculate Conception.

History Edit

The Villa di Castel Fusano was commissioned by Cardinal Giulio Sacchetti, and was completed in 1629. Pietro da Cortona, Andrea Camassei and Andrea Sacchi worked on the project, which resulted in a monumental Baroque villa.

The villa edifice contains a private chapel, worked on by Camassei and Sacchi and with an altar with the odd dedication of SS Catherine of Siena and Mary Magdalen de' Pazzi. This is because the two saints were the patrons of the Sacchetti family.

In 1658, the family began a project to colonise the very thinly populated area with small farmers (terroni) in an attempt to improve their estate. Unfortunately, the extensive marshlands along the coast were full of malarial mosquitoes and the settlers had all either died or fled by 1685. After a pause, the family turned to forestry and planted very many trees from 1713. This resulted in the very impressive forest landscape which survives (despite recent fires).

The Concezione chapel stands some distance away from the villa to the east, in its own plot of land, and looks as if it began life as a public chapel. It seems to be a relic of the colonisation attempt in the 17th century, and if so has been redundant pastorally for over three hundred years. However, it has been kept in good repair.

Initially known as the Villa Sacchetti, the estate was purchased by the Chigi family in 1755. It was acquired by the city in 1932. The name Villa Chigi is hence also found.

Very little notice is being taken of the chapel.

Appearance Edit

The chapel is an octagonal stand-alone edifice with a dome. The diagonal sides of the octagon are somewhat shorter than the cardinal ones, and this is matched in the rather low tile-covered dome which has eight sectors separated by pantile ribs. There is no lantern, but a cross finial instead.

The corners of the octagon are occupied by high-profile Doric pilasters.

External links Edit

Info.roma web-page

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