This Church is a church built for the people - with accompanying convent, hospital and old people sanctuary - unlike neighbouring Santa Spirito, which was built purely as a place of worship for the rich people of the area. It is interesting as the Monastery that took in the 8 year old orphaned Fillipo Lippi where the other Monks had the sense to put this troublesome child to work with a paintbrush!!
It has been rebuilt and re-painted in 1782 following a terrible fire in 1771, which destroyed most of the church but almost miraculously the Brancacci frescoes in the separate little chapel were preserved. There is some remarkable trompe d'oile on the ceiling which can keep you guessing which is real and which painted for a while, but otherwise a bit too busy with Baroche and Rococco for my personal taste. The outside of the Church probably looks much the same as it did when it was founded in the 13th Century - no marble fascia - no decoration -and fortunately I do love it for that as I live opposite it!
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