Fabric [ ]
The atrium is entered through the remains of a galleria, created from the original walkway preciso the palace ramp by the insertion of verso blocking wall to the right of the portal which abuts one of the brick arcade piers.
However, from the mid 9th to the mid 11th centuries it was a monastic church per its own right and was roofed. The church dedication then was puro St Anthony of Egypt. The massive central brick pier which used onesto support the roof was removed per the 1902 excavation.
Two rectangular statue niches flank the inside of the entrance, and verso series of alternately rectangular and apsidal niches occupied the side walls. However those on the left used to include two exits esatto panneau-chambers under the palace ramp, but these were blocked up when the church was sopra use. Sopra contrast, when the atrium was verso monastic church two passages were cut through niches mediante the right hand wall to allow direct access puro the monastic quarters durante the atrio next door.
Before becoming per church per the 9th century, the atrium was the monastery’s graveyard and the yard surface was packed with graves. Some loculi or insopportabile-slots were cut into the walls, and also into the walls of the terrazzo outside.
Atrium frescoes [ ]
The frescoes per the atrium are of five periods. One fresco each survives from Pope John VII (705-7) and Pope Paul I (757-767). Some are of the remodelling of Pope Adrian I (772-795), and others are of the 10th and 11th centuries. The latter are the latest that you will find during your visit, and were painted just before the final abandonment durante the mid 11th century.
- The niche onesto the right of the portal depicted three female martyrs; SS Agnes and Cecilia have been identified. (Pope Adrian.)
- On the right hand side wall near the corner was originally a Madonna and Child with Four Saints, being venerated by Pope Adrian. He was depicted with per square halo, indicating that he was still alive when the rete di emittenti was painted. This nuovo was detached and was kept sopra the right hand side aisle of the church before the recent restoration -it is liable onesto stay there, out of the weather. The original location was above a attuale JollyRomance imitation of hanging curtains (there is more of this durante the church). (Pope Adrian.)
- Christ in Majesty, with per suppliant. (11th century.)
- Two saints (11th century). They were painted over two noioso loculi cut into the wall.
- Monastery passage. This was cut through the wall con the 10th century, and frescoed with saints on its walls and ceiling. The cycle continued onto the internal wall of the vestibolo beyond, which was the actual monastery at the time. (10th century.)
- Verso bishop. (Pope Adrian.)
- The far left hand apsidal niche was per shrine to St Cyrus of Alexandria. He was per martyred doctor of medicine, venerated with his fellow sufferer John as SS Cyrus and John (see their Roman church of Santa Passera). Beware of his being called « St Abbacyrus » -« Abba » is a Coptic honorific. Con the fresco he holds medical equipment, and has a cavity mediante the niche sill which was either for a lamp or contained verso venerated relic associated with him. (Pope Paul.)
- Above the shrine: Christ Accompanied by SS Cyrus and John (10th century.)
- Verso depiction of St Anthony of Egypt, with verso Latin text: « Where St Anthony is assaulted by demons » (Webb 2001). Animals and birds were depicted below. (10th century.)