Towards the end of the 15th century a spectacular wooden coffered ceiling was erected in the nave of Santa Maria Maggiore. It would be the first of many such ceilings, which competed with each other for opulence.
The gilded ceiling in Santa Maria Maggiore bears the coat of arms of the Borgia pope Alexander VI (r. 1492-1503). The gold was presented to the pope by Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain. Tradition has it that it was the first gold to come from the New World.
Below are some examples of other coffered ceilings in the churches of Rome.
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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