The Machine of the Forty Hours
Santa Maria dell' Orto is the only church in Rome still to have a working Macchina delle Quarant'ore (Machine of the Forty Hours).
The macchina, a 19th century copy of a 17th century work, takes the form of an enormous wooden candelabra made up of 213 candles. The candles are lit on the eve of Good Friday, in memory of the forty hours (quaranta ore) that passed, according to an ancient tradition, between Christ's crucifixion and his resurrection.
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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 and
small-group walking tours
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