Santa Maria del Sangue Oratorium Velletri
Address: Piazza Cesare Ottaviano Augusto – Velletri.
History and description
The history of the Santa Maria del Sangue Oratory (“Oratory of Saint Mary of the Blood”) is linked to a miraculous event. In 1516, a Madonna effigy painted on the wall of a nearby house cried tears of blood.
The population and the magistracy of the city decided to build a temple in memory where the effigy would be kept. The construction of this temple was completed in 1579.
The building was given to the Brotherhood of the Most Holy Trinity of Pilgrims and Convalescents. It was intended that lodging would be provided here for pilgrims who traveled to Rome during Holy Years to visit the tombs of the apostles Paul and Peter.
The temple is octagonal in shape. The style is reminiscent of Bramante, but the actual designer is not known. Since Bramante himself had already died when the temple was built, it is assumed that it was one of his students. One of the suggested possibilities is Alessandro da Parma.
What to see
There were three altars in the temple. At the central altar there was a crucifix that had been made in Rome in 1579. The fresco at the left altar was said to be the famous “Madonna and Child” to which the church owes its existence.