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 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 stoups of yellow Siena 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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