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Palazzo Santacroce

Typology: Buildings


Address: Piazza Benedetto Cairoli, 5
Zone: Rione Regola (Campo de' Fiori-Piazza Farnese) (Roma centro)


The Santacroce family owned several houses between the S. Angelo and Regola districts as early as the 15th century, including the palace where the Monte di Pietà was later established.
The family's wealth was largely due to Cardinal Prospero Santacroce, who was the first to introduce tobacco, then called 'Santacroce grass', into Italy from Portugal, where he was apostolic nuncio to Pius IV Medici (1559-1565). The Palazzo dei Santacroceai Catinari was built between 1598 and 1602 by Onofrio to a design by Carlo Maderno. In a second phase, between 1630 and 1640, the facades were probably built by Francesco Peparelli. The part of the palace facing Vicolo dei Catinari, including a small fountain in the hanging garden, is the work of the architect Alessio De Rossi (1616-1695). The facades, restored in the 19th century, have three floors and a mezzanine between the first and second floors. The façades have three main doors; the one on Piazza S.Carlo ai Catinari bears the coat of arms of the Santacroce and Sforza Cesarini families, related to the last representative of the Santacroce family. The windows on the first and third floors are architraved, the others moulded; all are decorated with stucco festoons. Two corner balconies are located on the first and third floors.
The interior has two courtyards, once adorned with bas-reliefs and statues, now dispersed; in the back courtyard is an 18th century fountain formed by an arch framed by pillars supported by telamons, in the centre of which is a depiction of Venus rising from a shell. For several years, the palace housed the Italo-Latin American Institute (now in another location) and the graduate school in European Studies of the Faculty of Economics and Business of the University of Rome.

See also

Culture and leisure › Cultural institutions › Academies and institutes
Last checked: 2014-05-19 10:23