Oratory of the Gonfalone
Duration: 1 hour
The church of Santa Maria Annunziata del Gonfalone, better known as Oratorio del Gonfalone, is located in via del Gonfalone, near via Giulia. Since 1960 the oratory has been the seat of the Roman polyphonic choir, which periodically holds concerts there.
The church was built in the mid-sixteenth century on the ruins of the old Santa Lucia church, as an oratory of the Archconfraternity of the Gonfalone, which had its seat in the adjacent building and dedicated to Maria Santissima Annunziata and the Apostles Peter and Paul. The term “banner” means “flag / banner”, and refers to the fact that in the 14th century, in its processions, the Brotherhood used to raise the Pope’s flag (at that time in Avignon) to reaffirm its sovereignty over Rome. The oratory was later renovated in the seventeenth century by Domenico Castelli, to whom the facade is also due.
The oratory is precious for the paintings that adorn it and which depict Stories of the Passion of Christ, a series of twelve frescoes by the main exponents of Roman Mannerism. In fact, the frescoes representing the Empire of Christ in Jerusalem, the Last Supper and the Journey to Calvary are by Livio Agresti; by Cesare Nebbia the Oration in the Garden, the Coronation of Thorns and the Ecce Homo; by Raffaellino da Reggio the “Capture of Jesus, by Federico Zuccari the Flagellation; by Daniele da Volterra the Crucifixion and the Deposition of the Cross; the Resurrection by Marco da Siena, the David by Matteo da Lecce. In the wooden ceiling there is a carved work by Ambrogio Bonazzini depicting the Virgin and Saints Peter and Paul.