Cervantes & the Trinitarians
Embedded into the floor of the church of San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane is the emblem of the Trinitarians, formerly known as the Order of the Most Holy Trinity and of the Captives (Ordo Sanctissimae Trinitatis et Captivorum) or OSsT.
The emblem of the Trinitarians takes the form of a Cross, which is made up of a red vertical bar and a blue horizontal one.
The Order was founded in 1198 to liberate Christian slaves held captive by Muslims through the payment of ransoms. It has been estimated that as many as 90,000 such slaves were freed through the work of the Trinitarians, including the Spanish writer Miguel de Cervantes (1547-1616), the author of the novel Don Quixote. Cervantes was buried among the Trinitarians at Madrid, in the habit of a Trinitarian tertiary.
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My name is David Lown and I am an art historian from Cambridge, England. Since 2001 I have lived in Italy, where I run private walking tours of Rome.
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