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On the balcony of the 12th-century Baptistry in Pisa, Italy. 
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On the balcony of the 12th-century Baptistry in Pisa, Italy.

"The Baptistery, which as in all the ancient Italian churches, is separated from the cathedral, stands about fifty paces from it full in front. It is raised on three steps, is circular, and surmounted with a graceful dome. It has two stories, formed of halfpillars supporting round arches; the undermost is terminated by a bold cornice; the second, where the pillars stand closer, and the arches are smaller, runs up into numberless high pediments and pinnacles, all topped by statues. Above these, rises a third story without either pillars or arches, but losing itself in high pointed pediments with pinnacles, crowned again with statues without number. The dome is intersected by long lines of very prominent stone fretwork, all meeting in a little cornice near the top, and terminating in another little dome which bears a statue of St. John the Baptist, the titular saint of all such edifices. The interior is admired for its proportion. Eight granite columns form the under story, which supports a second composed of sixteen marble pillars; on this rests the dome. The ambo or desk for reading is of most beautiful marble, upheld by ten little granite pillars, and adorned with basso relievos, remarkable rather for the era and the sculptor than for their intrinsic merit. The font is also marble, a great octagon vase, raised on three steps and divided into five compartments, the largest of which is in the middle. The dome is famous for its echo, as the sides produce the well-known effect of whispering galleries. This edifice, which is the common baptistery of the city as there is no other font in Pisa, was erected about the middle of the twelfth century by the citizens at large, who, by a voluntary subscription of a fiorino each, defrayed the expenses." (John Chetwode Eustace: A Tour through Italy, Vol. II, London 1813).
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The Baptistry in Pisa
The Basilica Papale di San Paolo fuori le mura or St. Paul's Outside the Walls in Rome, Italy. 
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The Basilica Papale di San Paolo fuori le mura or St. Paul's Outside the Walls in Rome, Italy.

"The basilica was founded by the Roman Emperor Constantine I over the burial place of Saint Paul, where it was said that, after the Apostle's execution, his followers erected a memorial, called a cella memoriae. This first edifice was expanded under Valentinian I in the 370s. In 386, Emperor Theodosius I began erecting a much larger and more beautiful basilica with a nave and four aisles with a transept; the work including the mosaics was not completed until Leo I's pontificate (440–461). In the 5th century it was larger than the Old St. Peter's Basilica. [...]

On 15 July 1823 a fire, started through the negligence of a workman who was repairing the lead of the roof, resulted in the almost total destruction of the basilica which, alone of all the churches of Rome, had preserved its primitive character for 1435 years. It was re-opened in 1840, and reconsecrated 1855 with the presence of Pope Pius IX and fifty cardinals. Completing the works of reconstruction took longer, however, and many countries made their contributions. The Viceroy of Egypt sent pillars of alabaster, the Emperor of Russia the precious malachite and lapis lazuli of the tabernacle. The work on the principal facade, looking toward the Tiber, was completed by the Italian Government, which declared the church a national monument." (Text from Wikipedia).

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Inside the church of Santa Maria in Aracoeli on the Capitoline Hill in Rome, Italy. 
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Inside the church of Santa Maria in Aracoeli on the Capitoline Hill in Rome, Italy.

"The Aracoeli is perhaps the most typically Roman of all Roman churches. Rising above the ruins of a temple dedicated to a pagan mother-goddess and now consecrated to the Madonna — a transformation which is far from rare in Italy — its interior provides a perfect illustration of the continuity of Roman life, with its magnificent and assorted columns that once graced classical temples and palaces, and its cosmatesque pavement and monuments gleaming with brilliant fragments of marbles taken from the ancient ruins. The floor is chequered with the tombstones of famous men who lived and worked in Rome throughout the centuries, the walls are lined with the votive chapels of historic Roman families, scores of glass chandeliers lace the whole interior, and the magnificent gilded ceiling commemorates the papal fleet’s participation in the victory of Lepanto, which ended Turkish naval expansion in the Mediterranean." (Georgina Masson: The Companion Guide to Rome, Woodbridge 2009).
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Santa Maria in Aracoeli, Rome
Inside the Church of the Most Holy Trinity of Pilgrims (Chiesa della Santissima Trinità dei Pellegrini) in the Regola rione of Rome. 
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Inside the Church of the Most Holy Trinity of Pilgrims (Chiesa della Santissima Trinità dei Pellegrini) in the Regola rione of Rome.

Urged by Filippo Neri, by 1540 lay members of his order gathered at the church of San Girolamo della Carita. Neri soon had Pope Paul III recognize the group it as the Confraternita della Santissima Trinita de' Pellegrini e de' Convalescenti (Fraternity of the Holy Trinity of Pilgrims and Convalescent. For the Jubilee of 1550, the group took on the burden of hosting pilgrims, with particular regard for those who came from distant lands. After Holy Year, the association cared for the convalescent poor, discharged from city hospitals. In 1558, Pope Paul IV assigned them the perpetual use of the church of San Benedetto in Arenula, which was in very bad condition. The next year, the fraternity bought a house near the church to be used as a hospital-hospice. For the Jubilee of 1575, the fraternity hosted more than 180,000 pilgrims. The fraternity ultimately tore down the decrepit church, and decided to build a new. The first stone was laid on February 26, 1587, and consecration took place on June 12, 1616 and titled Santissima Trinita e San Benedetto. In subsequent centuries the parish and adjacent buildings continued to serve as a hospice for pilgrims, or as a hospital. (Text from Wikipedia).
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Inside the church of Santa Maria dell'Orazione e Morte (Saint Mary of the Prayer and Death) on Via Giulia in Rome, Italy. 
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Inside the church of Santa Maria dell'Orazione e Morte (Saint Mary of the Prayer and Death) on Via Giulia in Rome, Italy.

First built in 1575, the church was completely rebuilt by Ferdinando Fuga in 1733 using an elliptical plan.

Inside may be seen frescoes of St. Anthony Abbot and St. Paul of Thebes by Giovanni Lanfranco; these were removed and transferred to this church from a now-lost structure built by Odoardo Farnese. [...]

Additionally, the church houses a chamber decorated with human bones; a large number of skulls, candelabras constructed of bones, and a large cross adorned with skulls are among the room's adornments. This chamber is located through a door to the left of the main altar and is rarely open to visitors.

Santa Maria was built by a confraternity that assumed responsibility for interring abandoned corpses in Rome. It is remarkable for the depictions of laureled skulls over the façade entrance and other death imagery. In this it has some of the morbid encrustations also seen in the Roman church of the Capuchins. Its charity was, and still is, supported by the Arciconfraternita di Santa Maria dell'Orazione e Morte, a purgatorial society dating to the 1560s. Burials were performed in their cemetery, once sited on the banks of the Tiber adjacent to the church. Architect Fuga and San Carlo Borromeo were members of the fraternity.

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The church of Santa Maria dell'Orazione e Morte, Rome
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Thursday, Nov 2, 2017: On the walls of Palácio da Pena in Sintra, Portugal
Palácio da Pena
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