The two colossal holy-water stoups, which stand on either side of the nave of St Peter's Basilica, give a good sense of the sheer size of the church. The four cherubs that hold up the two stoups are each six feet tall.
The holy-water stoups (acquasentiere), which take the form of elaborately ornate shells, were commissioned by Pope Benedict XIII (r. 1724-30) and designed by Agostino Cornacchini (1686-1754). The shells of yellow marble are the work of Giuseppe Lirone, while the chubby cherubs were carved by Francesco Moderati and Giovanni Battista de Rossi.
Blogging about Rome:
its art, history and culture.
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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