Chiesa di San Callisto
Chiesa di San Callisto
3.5
What people are saying
An ancient church in the heart of Trastevere, which occasionally is turned into a night shelter for the poor.
3.0 of 5 bubblesApr 2021
A few steps from the Basilica of Santa Maria in Trastevere, there is the Church of St. Callixtus. The two churches are connected from the inside through the Palazzo San Callisto. It is an ancient church, built in the place where the pope Callixtus I was martyred. The martyrdom occurred under the emperor Alexander Severus: the pope was thrown into a well with a stone around his neck. This well is still preserved in the adjoining convent garden and can be visited. In the sixteenth century pope St. Pius V, having taken from the Benedictines their convent on Quirinale Hill, granted them the adjoining building to this church: the church and building were restored by Orazio Torrigiani. The church, with a late Renaissance façade with two orders, was built by Pope Gregory III (741) on the site of the saint's martyrdom and rebuilt by Orazio Torriani (1610). In the right chapel, two sculptures of "angels", attributed to Gian Lorenzo Bernini (1657), support the altarpiece "St. Maurus the Abbot" by Pier Leone Ghezzi. St Maurus was a disciple of St Benedict, while he was at Subiaco. On the main altar there is an altarpiece with "St. Callixtus and Others Who Adore the Virgin" by Avanzino Nucci. In the left chapel, there is the painting “St. Callixtus thrown into the well ”, by Giovanni Bilivert, dating back to the first decades of the 17th century. After 1870 the convent was confiscated by Italian state and used as a barracks. It was then returned to the Holy See and partly demolished. In its place, during the pontificate of Pope Pius XI, an imposing palace was built in 1936, in the style of the time, which was granted extraterritorial rights by the Italian Republic and was intended to house Vatican offices. The church is usually closed. For some years now, the church has been made available for the night to host homeless people. The Christian Community of Sant’Egidio, made up of volunteers, is in charge of taking care of the reception. For any visits, you can contact the Vicariate.

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The area
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Neighbourhood: Trastevere
Trastevere ("beyond the Tiber") is like a faded postcard, a little worn around the edges but still charming. With its wide-open piazzas, meandering streets, weathered Renaissance buildings, and overgrown personality, it's become an irresistible mecca for visitors. Trastevere is an enclave of entertainment - a rotating set of street performers entertains almost every night, and unforgettable eateries and bars pepper its piazzas and side streets. For a trip to the past, visit the southern and western flanks of Trastevere for pockets of yesteryear, less traversed areas with a residual 1960s and 70s Roman vibe.

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dapper777
Monaco64,501 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2021 • Friends
A few steps from the Basilica of Santa Maria in Trastevere, there is the Church of St. Callixtus. The two churches are connected from the inside through the Palazzo San Callisto.
It is an ancient church, built in the place where the pope Callixtus I was martyred. The martyrdom occurred under the emperor Alexander Severus: the pope was thrown into a well with a stone around his neck.
This well is still preserved in the adjoining convent garden and can be visited.
In the sixteenth century pope St. Pius V, having taken from the Benedictines their convent on Quirinale Hill, granted them the adjoining building to this church: the church and building were restored by Orazio Torrigiani.
The church, with a late Renaissance façade with two orders, was built by Pope Gregory III (741) on the site of the saint's martyrdom and rebuilt by Orazio Torriani (1610).
In the right chapel, two sculptures of "angels", attributed to Gian Lorenzo Bernini (1657), support the altarpiece "St. Maurus the Abbot" by Pier Leone Ghezzi. St Maurus was a disciple of St Benedict, while he was at Subiaco.
On the main altar there is an altarpiece with "St. Callixtus and Others Who Adore the Virgin" by Avanzino Nucci.
In the left chapel, there is the painting “St. Callixtus thrown into the well ”, by Giovanni Bilivert, dating back to the first decades of the 17th century.
After 1870 the convent was confiscated by
Italian state and used as a barracks.
It was then returned to the Holy See and partly demolished. In its place, during the pontificate of Pope Pius XI, an imposing palace was built in 1936, in the style of the time, which was granted extraterritorial rights by the Italian Republic and was intended to house Vatican offices.
The church is usually closed.
For some years now, the church has been made available for the night to host homeless people.
The Christian Community of Sant’Egidio, made up of volunteers, is in charge of taking care of the reception.
For any visits, you can contact the Vicariate.
Written 5 May 2021
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 Kingdom11,032 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2023 • Couples
The church of San Calisto is one of the older churches in Trastevere. It was first built in 741, to mark the site where St Calisto died, and was later rebuilt in the 12th century and again in the 15th century.
St Calisto died a martyr in 222 or 223. It was one of the less grisly deaths of an early saint and although being thrown down a well was certainly unpleasant for St Calisto, it beats being slow roasted over hot coals like St Lawrence or being stuffed into a barrel full of broken glass and rolled down the street like St Eulalia.
Unfortunately I have never seen this church open. It has a closed and forsaken look about it so I suspect that it may no longer be open to the public.
From the piazza, you can see that the Baroque facade has been stripped of most of its decoration. The niches all stand empty but you can still see the lovely architectural scrolls at the top of the church and the coat of arms of Pope Paul V.
Apparently, there are two Bernini angels inside so I was disappointed not to be able to go in.
Written 14 June 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.
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Chiesa di San Callisto - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024) - Tripadvisor

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