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“Baroque Heaven”

Santa Maria della Vittoria
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$98.63*
and up
Semi-Private Walking Tour: Angels and Demons
Ranked #57 of 2,024 things to do in Rome
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Reviewed May 26, 2013

This church was featured in 'Angels and Demons' when a Cardinal was fried. It has peculiar opening hours but mornings and late afternoons it seems generally open.
Ignore the beggars at the door they represent nothing other than themselves and if you give them money you are encouraging them to persist.
How can one describe this church? Words are difficult but if you are a northern Protestant you had better try to keep a straight face.
It is a camp orgy of pink bottomed cherubs and slightly leering angels in high stucco relief, flying upwards toward the heavens. Overdecorated to within an inch of its life, it is quite simply the campest church in Rome, and that's saying a lot.
In a side chapel, on the left hand side nearest the high altar, Bernini is up to his usual tricks. His 'St. Teresa in ecstasy' floats above fluffy clouds with an expression a gentleman should not try to describe. A cherub is trying to pierce her heart with a golden arrow. The cherub also has an expression best not described. The whole is lit by golden light from a hidden source. It is simply stunning. A virtuoso sculptural work which has always divided opinion. The best thing is not to listen to anybody else but to make your own mind up.
At the back of the church - down a corridor on the right hand side, there is a pharmacy run by the monks who manage the church. They sell pills for everything.Heart, liver, in fact anything which might ail you. Mine have not had an effect yet but I am hoping. The one thing they do not sell is a pill which might get you the kind of expression that St Teresa has. Very disappointing!
For the joy of experiencing the sheer theatricality of Baroque Rome, this church is a must.

4  Thank GrandTourPaul
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"st teresa"
in 50 reviews
"small church"
in 47 reviews
"bernini sculpture"
in 38 reviews
"beautiful church"
in 44 reviews
"angels demons"
in 14 reviews
"bernini fan"
in 6 reviews
"famous statue"
in 6 reviews
"baroque style"
in 9 reviews
"virgin mary"
in 7 reviews
"the main attraction"
in 6 reviews
"side chapels"
in 5 reviews
"jaw dropping"
in 5 reviews
"termini station"
in 8 reviews
"well worth the visit"
in 7 reviews
"under renovation"
in 6 reviews
"ecstasy"
in 201 reviews
"theresa"
in 72 reviews
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369 - 373 of 1,207 reviews

Reviewed May 20, 2013

If you have a chance to visit then do, its smaller than some but no less ornate and beautifully decorated and of course its home to the Ecstasy of Saint Teresa. Watch out for rather enterprising beggars who dress slightly better than other beggars and hold the door open shaking a new looking wicker basket at you and demand payment to enter - if you want to make a donation to the church then do so inside.

2  Thank Pixie00
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 14, 2013

We went there mostly for the Ecstasy of Saint Teresa, but found the rest of the church very beautiful with its sculpted columns and painted ceiling. It closes at lunch time so plan accordingly. There was someone by the door begging for coins in name of the church but there was no sign saying that we had to pay and we found it very strange since the person asking for money looked like an immigrant. We heard some Italian people entering and discussing with the man making me think that he was scamming people. Pay attention to that.

Thank PedroBorges
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 13, 2013

Stunning in person, the Ecstasy makes an impression. This church is beautiful. See it if you get a chance.

Thank laulydel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed May 12, 2013

The statue of the Ecstasy of St Therese by Bernini is absolutely beautiful. We would have missed this gem entirely were it not for our guide, Sergio Grom from localguiding.com who brought us to this little church.

Thank EuropeTerri
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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