A Jacobite Gazetteer - Rome

Chiesa di San Gregorio dei Muratori

This tiny church is located at Via Leccosa 75, just south of the Ponte Cavour.

Since 1931 the church has been the home of the Arciconfraternita degli Amanti di Gesù e Maria, detta della Via Crucis (Archconfraternity of the Lovers of Jesus and Mary, called of the Way of the Cross). The archconfraternity was founded by Saint Leonard of Port Maurice, confessor to Queen Maria Clementina, wife of King James III and VIII. King Charles IV was a member of the archconfraternity.

In the sacristy of the church can be seen a glass-fronted wooden box containing the confraternity habit worn by Charles IV. On the side of the box is a document attesting to the authenticity of the habit. The habit is a very simple brown (now much faded) gown with a red cross on the front. It was worn by Charles IV when he participated in the Way of the Cross.

Confraternity habit of Charles IV
Confraternity habit of Charles IV
Confraternity habit of Charles IV
Documenting attesting to the authenticity of the habit

In 1749 Pope Benedict XIV, at the request of Saint Leonard of Port Maurice, ordered the construction of an "Oratorio della Via Crucis" in a Roman apsed hall to the right of the rotunda of the Basilica dei Santi Cosma e Damiano on Via dei Fori Imperiali just to the left of the entrance to the Roman Forum. The chapel came to be known by the name of "Gesù e Maria al Monte Calvario". The modern construction was removed between 1877 and 1879 as part of the excavations of the Roman Forum. 1 There was formerly in this chapel an Italian inscription recording Charles IV's entrance into the archconfraternity: 2

IL · DÌ · 16 · FEBRARO · 1805

Charles Emanuel, King of Sardinia,
joined our archconfraternity
February 16, 1805.
He passed to eternal rest, October 6, 1819.


1 Walther Buchowiecki, Handbuch der Kirchen Roms: Der Römische Sakralbau in Geschichte und Kunst von der Altchristlichen Zeit bis zur Gegenwart (Wien: Verlag Brüder Hollinek, 1967), I, 593; Vincenzo Forcella, Iscrizioni delle Chiese e d'Altri Edificii di Roma dal Secolo XI fino ai Giorni Nostri (Rome: Tipografia delle Scienze, Matematiche e Fisiche, 1869-1884), XII, 353.

2 Forcella, XII, 356. In May 2002 I enquired at the Basilica dei Santi Cosma e Damiano about what happened to the inscription, but without any success. I have not had the opportunity to enquire at San Gregorio dei Muratori.

Image 1 (Confraternity habit of Charles IV): "Roman Miscellany: The Blog of an English Catholic Priest", http://romanmiscellany.blogspot.com/2007_12_01_archive.html

Image 2 (Document attesting to the authenticity of the habit): Ibid.

This page is maintained by Noel S. McFerran (noel.mcferran@rogers.com) and was last updated July 21, 2008.
© Noel S. McFerran 2000-2008.