Chapel of Saint Cajetan

1. S. Gaetano Thiene (1480-1547). Born in Vicenza and moved to Rome under the orders of Giulio II. He founded here, in the Eternal City, together with the theatine bishop Gian Pietro Carafa, then Paolo IV, in 1524, the “Compagnia dei Chierici Regali Teatini” (The company of the Regular Clerics, Theatines). Beatified by Pope Urban VIII in 1629, and canonized by Pope Clement X on April 12 of 1671. This left wing of the transept was always dedicated to the worship of s. Cajetan. After the first painting in 1629 by Andrea Camassei from Bevagna, now lost, which represented s. Cajetan writing the rule of the Order; Then, in 1770, today’s painting (5.50 x 2.50 m.) by Mattia De Mare (1711-1773), which interprets the “vision” of the saint on the Christmas Eve of 1517 in s. Maria Maggiore in Rome.

2. The altar. It was erected in 1912 thanks to an inheritance of the Marquis Gaetano Ferraioli, the altar is rich in precious marbles, statues and bronze reliefs. It replaces the baroque style altar that in 1770 Alessio D’Elia had painted on the wall, adorned with 4 side columns, 2 virtues at the base and 2 angels on the attic.

The present arrangement of 2 columns columns, the tympanum with an Aedicula, the decoration with the statues made by the Tripisciano and bronze reliefs, the abundance of marbles of today’s altar by Cesare Bassani (1873-1939), declare the inspiration to the preceding baroque one. At the sides of the altar, the statutes of the Providence and the Wisdom, signed by Giulio Tadolini (1849-1918).

3. The decoration of the chapel. The 4 side wall frescoes (6 x 1.30 m) date back to 1770 and are made by the Neapolitan painter Alessio D’Elia, student of Solimena. In chronological order, the 1st on the left, on the arch, represents S. Gaetano, apostolic protonotary in Rome (1508-1518), helping the poor and the sick. The 2nd, the profession of S. Gaetano at the altar of the Confession of St. Peter on September 14, 1524. The 3rd, on the right, S. Gaetano angered by the Lanzichenecchi during the Sack of Rome of 1527. The 4th, on the arch of the chapel of our lady of Purity  the Chastity of, St. Cajetan glorified, protector against the plague. The mediocre decoration of the vault (1912) represents several episodes of S. Gaetano’s life.