Rome Attractions

Santa Maria della Pace

Santa Maria della Pace church in Rome, Italy

This tiny church, tucked away in a dark alley close to Piazza Navona, presents an intriguing exterior and a nest of interior artistic treasures.

Detail of dome of Santa Maria della Pace, renaissance church near Piazza Navona.

Detail of dome of Santa Maria della Pace, renaissance church near Piazza Navona.

Dome of Santa Maria della Pace, Rome, Italy.

Dome of Santa Maria della Pace, Rome, Italy.

In 1482, Pope Sixtus IV wanted to modify the existing church dedicated to the Virgin, in order to give thanks to her for the peace with Milan. The first commission was probably awarded to the architect Baccio Pontelli, who created a rectangular space; an octagonal centrally-planned structure with a dome and a cloister was added, probably by Bramante.

Raphael’s frescoes of the Sibyls - above the arch of the Chigi Chapel, commissioned by Agostino Chigi, the papal banker

Raphael’s frescoes of the Sibyls – above the arch of the Chigi Chapel, commissioned by Agostino Chigi, the papal banker

Raphael’s frescoes of the Sibyls - above the arch of the Chigi Chapel, commissioned by Agostino Chigi, the papal banker

Raphael’s frescoes of the Sibyls

Detail from Raphael's Sibyls in Santa Maria della Pace, shoieing the influence of Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel frescoes

Detail from Raphael’s Sibyls in Santa Maria della Pace, shoieing the influence of Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel frescoes

In 1656, Pietro da Cortona renovated the church and finished it with the Baroque façade and the semi-circular vestibule (pronaos). Raphael’s frescoes of the sibyls making prophesies, which he painted in 1515 and to which prophets and saints were later added by other painters, are the crowning glory. Bramante designed the beautiful cloister in 1504 by order of Cardinal Caraffa.

Christ supported by Angels-by Cosimo Fancelli, Cappella Chigi

Christ supported by Angels-by Cosimo Fancelli, Cappella Chigi

Interior of the church

Interior of the church

Tickets & Tours:

Colosseum to Santa Maria della Pace:

Santa Maria della Pace set in the Via delle Pace, 2,4 km from (30 min walk) from Colosseum. Bus Lines: 26, 70, 81, 88, 90.