San Vittorino Vescovo e Martire is a 17th century parish church on the Piazza Castello Barberini, in the old village and zone of San Vittorino. This is south of the Strada dei Parchi and east of the Autostrada del Sole. Pictures of the church on Wikimedia Commons are here.

The dedication is to St Victorinus of Pettau.

This church is in the municipality, but belongs to the diocese of Tivoli and is due south of that town.

History Edit

San Vittorino is an old-established country village, with no trace of suburban development. It and its church have been in existence for over a thousand years. The first reference dates back to 979, when the ecclesia Sancti Victorini belonged to the Bishop of Tivoli. Then, in 996 we find the local castle in possession of the monastery of San Paolo fuori le Mura.

In 1410 the abbey lost possession in favour of the Colonna family, which sold it to Cardinal Francesco Barberini in 1635. He rebuilt the church and much of the village, and converted the castle into a country villa. The Barberini family remain in possession of the latter.

There was a restoration of the church in 2008.

The village has another old church in Santa Maria a San Vittorino, but both churches are rather overshadowed by the shrine of Nostra Signora di Fatima a San Vittorino just north of the village.


Layout and fabric Edit

This is the original village parish church, and as such has a typical location in an enclosed little piazza with building abutting it on both sides. The left hand edifice is the original priest's house. The nucleus of the village occupies the original castle bailey, and is perched on top of a hill. Although you can't tell from the piazza, the right hand side wall and the sanctuary wall of the church are perched on top of a steep slope that curves around the back of the church.

The church is a very straightforward rectangular brick box, which now has a flat roof.

Campanile Edit

The priest's house sprouts a simple tower campanile, in two storeys above the roof the lower of which is higher. This structure has been altered to bring the bells down from the original bell-chamber, presumably because of worries about stability. The original bell-chamber has a round-headed opening on each face, but the lower storey only has a slightly larger one on three faces since the roof of the house gets in the way round the back. The tower is rendered in the same bright ochre yellow as the façade, and has a low tiled pyramidal cap.

Façade Edit

The church has a very simple gabled façade in ochre yellow. This looks smart after its restoration in 2008. There is a low plinth in what looks like marble, and the entire façade otherwise has a slightly raised frame in a creamy white. The door-case, with a curved top enclosing a blank segmental tympanum, is also in white as is the frame of a single rectangular window above.

Above the window is a very small marble dedication tablet, simply set into the wall without a frame. The roofline, above the frame, has a simply molded cornice (since the modern roof is flat, the gable is actually false).


The simple single-naved interior has a shallow barrel-vaulted ceiling, which springs from cornices at the tops of the side walls. These are supported by shallow Tuscan Doric pilasters, two on each side and four folded into the corners. The cornice is taken over the altar in a curve, springing from two short horizontal lengths running from the far top corners.

The entire interior is in a creamy white. Apart from the window in the counterfaçade, there is only a single window in the right hand side wall.

There is part of a fresco of the patron saint over the altar, obviously detached from somewhere else and brought here. To the left, the tabernacle has a pedimented marble surround which looks 16th century.

Two fragments of ancient sculpture are preserved together in the church, a small ribbed column of square cross-section and a marble block showing two soldiers either side of a blank inscription tablet.

Liturgy Edit

The parish website is "down", and information as regards Mass times is not readily available.

External linksEdit

Parish website (defunct in 2017)

Info.roma web-page

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.