37 Pages

Convents and Monasteries

ByChristian Elling

This chapter discusses the influence of traditional monastery architecture on the development of Rome's apartment houses. Rome's monasteries from the period of Late Baroque vary both from the religious and the social point of view. Rome's numerous religious houses have for so long remained a closed book as far as the history of art is concerned. The pilgrim carried the house of his order with him on his back, and cast down his burden on the threshold of Rome's most lonely dwelling. The new country abbeys in Rome which are erected after Bernini's time were, like the old ones, compelled to be highly concentrated. The core of the casino, a square block with a central belvedere, can be seen in Falda's bird's eye view of Rome from 1676. A prospect by Falda from 1676 shows the original building, the outline of which remains almost unchanged.