|Santa Maria Maggiore|
The Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore is the largest church in Rome dedicated to the 'Virgin Mary' was our next goal.
The church, which dates back to the fifth century, has a magnificent interior with a quite spectacular gilded ceiling and ornate chapels.
Santa Maria Maggiore is one of four Papal basilicas in Rome (the others are the St. Peter's Basilica, the St. John's Basilica and the St. Paul's Basilica). The church is located on the Esquiline Hill. The name of the church, "major", implies that it is the most important of the eighty churches in Rome that are dedicated to Mary. Impressive!
The church is sometimes called the Santa Maria della Neve (St. Mary of the Snow) or Liberian Basilica, a reference to the medieval Legend of the Snow or Pope Liberius.
Snow fell on August 5th at Esqviline Hill one of the seven Roman hills. Pope Liberius personally marked the boundaries of future basilica. The bell tower of the basilica is the highest of all bell towers of the Roman churches.
|San Pietro in Vincoli|
To be continued......