I hadn’t been to Santa Maria in Aracoeli (St. Mary of the Altar of Heaven) in a long time, but recently found myself next door, admiring the Capitoline wolf (aka the She-wolf of Rome). Thankfully my wife Laura recalled the easy, back-door entrance to the church from the Capitoline, versus huffing and puffing down the Capitoline stairs and then up again using the very intimidating stairs leading to the church.
Santa Maria in Aracoeli, dating from the 12th Century, was a very important church in the Middle Ages. Today, it is a bit of a hodgepodge inside. It feels like each generation had to add something, including the many crystal chandeliers, framing the ornate altar.
If you look around, there are other things of beauty here, all competing with one another.
And then there are the glorious Cosmatesque floors, which I’ll cover in the next post (yes, I am addicted to Roman floors).