Basilica Di San Bartolomeo all'Isola

Basilica Di San Bartolomeo all'Isola

Basilica Di San Bartolomeo all'Isola
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4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles144 reviews
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Mairwen1
United Kingdom10,932 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2023 • Couples
The 1000 year old basilica is the main sight on Tiber Island, the tiny boat-shaped island in the middle of Rome's Tiber River. It is dedicated to St Bartholomew, one of Christ’s original 12 disciples.
Last time we were here, the basilica was closed (it closes between 1 - 3:30pm). However this time, we found it open.
Entry is free.
Without knowing much about the church, we accidentally missed or overlooked some of the historical features like the ancient well and the miraculous cannonball. Even so, there’s a quite a bit to see here.
The interior is immediately striking. The long nave is lined by 14 tall columns (seven either side) with small alcove chapels on both sides.
The 17th century ceiling also caught our eye, with its fine carvings, frolicking cherubs and large scale paintings framed in golden coffered panels. St Bartholomew features in the middle panel.
Incredibly his almost 2000 year old remains are preserved underneath the high altar. The altar itself dates back to the Roman Empire and is made of imperial porphyry, a portly-red volcanic stone that is so rare, it can only be found at a single source, from a mountain in Egypt.
The strange looking bronze bowl that is enclosed in a metal grille is said to have been the original container for St Bartholomew’s relics. We wondered about this - I would have thought you’d want something with a lid on it.
One painting in particular stood out - a large Madonna and Child against a brilliant blue background. Several tiny Lilliputian-like saints gather around her feet. It dates back to the 13th century and is in the Orsini Chapel on the immediate right of the altar.
Interestingly, there were many tributes honouring modern-day martyrs. In 2000, Pope John Paul II dedicated the basilica to the “New Martyrs“ - 20th century martyrs who died for their faith. It includes those murdered during the Nazi regime, and others like Fr Jerzy Popieluszko, a Polish priest who who openly criticized Poland’s communist government and was murdered then dumped in a river in 1984 and Cardinal Juan Jesús Posadas Ocampo, who was shot in 1993.
Written June 8, 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Mairwen1
United Kingdom10,932 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2022
The basilica is the main sight on Isola Tiberina, the tiny boast-shaped island in the middle of Rome's Tiber River.
The island is so small that for most people this is just a quick visit as you cross over the two ancient bridges from Trastevere to the old Jewish Quarter.
The basilica is about 1000 years old and was built at the end of the 10th century by the Emperor Otto III. However what you see here today was mostly rebuilt in the 17th century so the facade is all creamy white Baroque grandeur.
Relics of the body of St Bartholomew are kept in a red porphyry sarcophagus under the high altar, along with St Adalbert. Bartholomew was one of the lesser known 12 apostles.
After Jesus’ crucifixion, he travelled, preaching the Gospel in Egypt, Persia, Armenia and India. Polymius, the king of Armenia, converted to Christianity but not everyone was so impressed. In general, the apostles suffered horrible deaths. Simon was sawn in half, John was boiled in oil and Bartholomew was skinned alive, then beheaded.
A statue of St. Bartholomew can be seen in the four sided monument out the front of the church.
The basilica was closed when we were there. Although it is open every day and entry is free, it is easy to miss out like we did because it closes between 1 - 3:30pm.
Written February 11, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Sanna-Mari H
Helsinki, Finland63 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2019 • Couples
We came to this church by accident, and luckily went in. This church is dedicated to the martyrs of last and this century, so it has memorable things that belonged to the martyrs that are familiar to us, for example Polish priest Jerzy Popiełuszko. Somehow they are more touching than the old relics.
Written May 3, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Douglas645
Horsham, UK205 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2014 • Couples
We came here with a specific reason to see the mosaic. We had to ask the custodian if we could see it as it is upstairs behind the loggia. The lovely female custodian took us to see it and spoke very slowly in Italian so we could understand. She then offered to take us under the church to see the ancient remains which was very interesting. We thoroughly enjoyed our visit. She really made this visit special -thank you. Grazie!
Written April 26, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

kokeraki
Kozani, Greece61 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2015 • Friends
in the whole rome there are so many churches that someone could say that they all look alike!!!me,i would recommend not to miss any!!!isn't that the reason you chose rome to go sightseeing?! visit this one as well!!
Written January 27, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

PatMurff
Ballymoney, UK631 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2022 • Solo
This is a wonderful and evocative church situated on Tiber Island. The island itself was previously covered in marble and bedecked as a ship sailing up the Tiber. This was one of the earliest places to be inhabited in Rome.
The Basilica of San Bartholomew is built on the site of the Roman temple to the God Aesculapius who guided the work of physicians. Basically it was an ancient hospital.
The present church dates to 997 though it has undergone numerous restorations since then.
A large porphyry tub under the main altar contains relics of the apostle St. Bartholomew and Adalbert the martyr.
Many churches in Rome are dedicated to martyrs who are long dead. This Basilica, while dedicated to St. Bartholomew, contains chapels which are dedicated to the martyrs of the modern church. These chapels were dedicated by Pope Saint John Paul in 2000 and contain relics of Blessed Jerzy Popieluszko who was murdered for his support of the Polish trade union Solidarity. There are also relics of Cardinal Cardinal Juan Jesús Posadas Ocampo, who was murdered for his opposition to Mexican drug cartels.
This lovely church provides a place to honour people who have died for their faith, from Jesus' own companion and follower, to those still suffering for their beliefs. It is truly a special place set on an island dedicated to healing since the earliest times. It is well worth a visit.
Written June 19, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Kevin S
Pontypool, UK2,324 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2019 • Couples
We stopped off on this little island on the Tiber and spotted this church.
Very beautiful exterior with great views.
Written September 3, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Sónia Rocha
Rio Tinto, Portugal12 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2018 • Friends
This church is small and dark, but very nicely decorated.
It has, under the altar, the relics of S. Bartolomeo.
It's history is very interesting.
I visited this site in April 2018
Written June 22, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

1earthlover
Plano, TX58 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2018 • Couples
Passed ir while walking to another location and something about it suggested that it would be worth a delay to examine it more closely. That was indeed the case, as it had an appealing and beautiful interior. It was a Sunday, and I did not have the luxury of an available attendant or guide but was sure glad I got to view it. Sure wished I could have remembered a bit more Latin from classes in my teens, as there were inscriptions all round. Mosaics were quite nice.
Written November 14, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Edchenck
Mountain View, CA14 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2018
I have always been fascinated by the martyrdom of San Bartolomeo. During our visit to Rome in May, we took time and visited the place. The river, the bridge and the Basilica complex were beautiful and we were very excited about what to come. Unfortunately contrary to what was described in the Google Map, the Basilica was closed and the lady answering the door gave no reason when asked. What a major disappointment! My advice would be to check it out before you go since it is not in the central part of Rome.
Written August 8, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Basilica Di San Bartolomeo all'Isola, Rome

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