Composers / Edvard Grieg / Places catalog
Piazza del Popolo
Piazza del Popolo closes the City Gate to the north. It is the most northerly part of ancient Rome. The centre of the square is adorned with an Egyptian obelisk, and on the south side stand two twin churches: Santa Maria in Montesanto and Santa Maria dei Miracoli. Between the churches, the main street, Via del Corso, begins. The third church, Santa Maria del Popolo, is home to two paintings by Caravaggio, and a fresco by Raphael adorns the ceiling. Grieg often strolled along Via del Corso, and he made a note in his diary about an exhibition of paintings by Roman artists on Piazza del Popolo on 18 March 1866. Unfortunately, the exhibition proved rather a disappointment to Grieg, for whom none of the paintings could compare to Italian art of previous eras. ‘I found further sad evidence that Rome comprises the ruins of vanishing greatness, nothing more… It is dangerous for people to possess a wonderful past, be it in politics or in art’.
Basilica of Santa Maria del Popolo. (creative commons)
Basilica of Santa Maria in Montesanto and Church of Santa Maria dei Miracoli in Piazza del Popolo. (creative commons)
Piazza del Popolo. (creative commons)