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Rome has an often overlooked, yet rich and diverse Romanesque and Gothic heritage. Many of the first Christian churches in the world were constructed in Rome, and Byzantine churches were mainly based on the Roman basilica. They were often oblong or geometric, long, with three naves and full of rich golden mosaics. Later Romanesque churches in Rome were more round, using the Roman arch. There are few Gothic churches in Rome. Examples of buildings from this period includes the Santa Maria Maggiore, the San Paolo Fuori le Mura (the later part being largely rebuilt in the 19th century), Santa Maria in Trastevere, Santi Quattro Coronati, Santa Prassede, Torre delle Milizie, the Torre dei Conti, and the Santa Maria in Ara Coeli. Elaborate tabernacles were popular especially in the 13th century, and basilicas were often full of rich mosaics. In the 12th and 13th centuries, the Cosmati family was famous for their mosacis and elegant decoration. They created beautiful marble floors with mosacis, often with inlays of green and red porphyry. Their designs in Rome became so popular that they were known as cosmatesque.

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Additional Photos by Daniel Draghici (dkmurphys) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5803 W: 83 N: 11854] (78504)
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