150TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE EXCAVATIONS AT ROME’S BASILICA OF SAN CLEMENTE - Postcards

150TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE EXCAVATIONS AT ROME’S BASILICA OF SAN CLEMENTE - Postcards  

The Basilica is dedicated to Saint Clement, the third pope in history (A.D. 88-97), who according to legend was thrown into the Black Sea after having been exiled to Crimea. The original basilica was built in 385 and destroyed by the Normans in 1084. In 1108 Pope Paschal II rebuilt it on top of the previous constructions, which were brought to light in 1857 by Dominican Father Joseph Mullooly. The excavations undertaken by Fr Mullooly are extraordinary and internationally renowned. They included the discovery of the tomb of Saint Cyril, a figure of great significance for the Christian roots and identity of Europe, making the Basilica of San Clemente a place of pilgrimage for Slavic peoples. The postcards reproduce watercolours by W. Ewing based on frescoes from the IX - XI centuries found inside the Basilica. The postcard is pre-stamped with a depiction of a portrait of Fr Mullooly. The cover depicts the visit of Blessed Pius IX to the excavations in 1865 (canvas by W. Ewing).