Palazzo Altemps

Palazzo Altemps

Palazzo Altemps , a few steps from Piazza Navona , was born as the Renaissance residence of the cardinal of the same name.

The Palazzo, rich in frescoes and valuable decorations , today houses the collections of ancient statuary of the great noble Roman families, including also Egyptian testimonies.

Among other treasures, Palazzo Altemps also houses the Boncompagni Ludovisi collection , with Magna Graecia masterpieces such as the Ludovisi Throne, Hellenistic such as the suicidal Galata group and imperial ones such as the sarcophagus with battle scenes known as the Great Ludovisi. Part of Evan Gorga's archeology collection has been on display to the public since 2013.

The Palazzo Altemps museum has thus opened up to the theme of early 20th-century collecting that draws on the antiques market, and to the finds from the great excavations of that era, making a comparison with that of the great Renaissance families of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.

The seat of the National Roman Museum in Palazzo Altemps illustrates in an exemplary way the emergence of collecting in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The passion for beautiful things, but also the desire to exhibit the economic strength and political power of the family, lead Roman families to collect masterpieces. The city's aristocracy, no doubt favored by Rome's archaeological wealth, rivals in the splendor of collecting. This is demonstrated by the numerous works preserved in the museum and coming from the collections of sculptures of the Altemps, Boncompagni Ludovisi, Mattei families, and the marble reliefs Brancaccio and del Drago.

The great political and religious importance of the Altemps family is undoubtedly evident in the church of Clemenza and Sant'Aniceto which is known not only for the extraordinary richness of gilded stuccos, colored marbles, paintings and mother-of-pearl inlays, but also because it is the the only church inside a private residence to keep the relics of a saint, those of Aniceto, one of the first popes.

To honor the memory of the saint , Pomarancio (Antonio Circignani) was called, author of the frescoes with the story of the martyrdom of Aniceto. It is here that Gabriele D'Annunzio married Maria Hardouin di Gallese in 1883, a family that last inherited Palazzo Altemps before it became the property of the Holy See in 1887.


Boncompagni Ludovisi Collection

Timetable and tickets


Piazza di Sant’Apollinare, 46
00186 Rome


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