We arrived in Rome 4 hours later and then went out siteseeing.
The church has had many names over the years: first Santa Maria della Neve (St. Mary of the Snow) after the snowfall, then Santa Maria Liberiana after Pope Liberius. After the basilica obtained a relic of the Holy Crib, it was called Santa Maria Del Presepe (St. Mary of the Crib). It was finally named Santa Maria Maggiore (St. Mary Major) because it is the largest of the 26 churches in Rome dedicated to the Virgin Mary.
Santa Maria Maggiore was fully restored and renovated in the 18th century - the facade and most of the interior decorations date from this period. Today, the basilica is served by Redemptorist and Dominican fathers and remains very popular with pilgrims and tourists alike.
The facade had to be magnificent. The upper part was characterized by a large central niche ( 6.50 meters wide ), with perhaps the statues of Alexander Severus and his mother Giulia Mamea on the sides of it two open arches , decorated until 1590 by the statues of the trophies that have given the name of the monument. The whole was concluded by a penthouse at the top , decorated with a chariot and other statues , and down from a roof catchment , dominated by a statue in the middle of the Ocean lying .
From this basin the water was coming down, no one knows how, at the bottom of the front , where there were a series of rectangular and semicircular niches (perhaps decorated with statues ) from which flow more water . All the water was collected in a large semi-circular pool , street level , where it can draw on.
For several centuries the magnificent ruins of the " Trophies of Marius " have faced the entry of Villa Palombara - a huge Baroque residence disappeared in the late nineteenth century for the construction of Piazza Vittorio - as you can see a beautiful engraving of Giovan Battista Piranesi, 1772, full of charm as the views of all 'Venetian artist.
The villa is the "Magic Door ", located on the back of the Roman monument and the subject of many fanciful legends .