Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Ponte Sant'Angelo, Rome

Just outside the Castel Sant'Angelo is the Ponte Sant'Angelo, a bridge across the Tiber. The bridge was originally known as the Aelian Bridge, named after Emperor Hadrian whose tomb was on the site of the Castel Sant'Angelo. The bridge has been there since 134 AD.

Ponte Sant'Angelo seen from the Castel

In 1535 Pope Clement VII commissioned statues of Peter and Paul, the evangelists, and some patriarchs for the bridge. In 1669 Pope Clement IX commissioned Bernini to replace the evangelists and patriarchs (which were crumbling) with ten statues of angels holding instruments of the passion. Bernini was at the end of his life and only finished two of the statues, the angel with the superscription INRI and the one with the crown of thorns. Clement liked the two statues so much he kept them for his own collection. After his death, the statues wound up in Sant'Andrea delle Fratte. Copies were made for the bridge.

Peter and Paul are located on the opposite side of the river from the castle, so we'll start from there.



Angel with the Whips

Angel with the Column

Angel with Veronica's Veil

Angel with the Crown of Thorns

Angel with the Nail

Angel with the Garment and Dice

Angel with the Cross

Angel with the Superscription INRI

Angel with the Sponge

Angel with the Lance

The bridge does draw tourists which draws sidewalk salesmen selling bags, sunglasses, trinkets, etc. We resisted the urge to purchase anything, recognizing most of it as low quality and uninteresting to us.

Tomorrow's post moves on to the Castel Sant'Angelo!

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