Santa Maria della Concezione Crypts

Jan 14, 2020 455

In 1775, the Marquis de Sade wrote of it, “I have never seen anything more striking.” Granted, the crypt was to his tastes. Mark Twain wrote about it in his 1869 book Innocents Abroad. When Twain asked one of the monks what would happen when he died, the monk responded, “We must all lie here at last.”

And lie there they do. Some 4,000 Capuchin friars who died between 1528 and 1870 are still lying, hanging, and generally adorning the Santa Maria della Concezione crypt in Rome. In 1631, the Capuchin friars, so-called because of the “capuche” or hood attached to their religious habit, left the friary of St. Bonaventure near the Trevi Fountain and came to live at Santa Maria della Concezione, of which only the church and crypt remain. 

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