Key to Umbria: Gubbio

Santa Croce della Foce (1262)

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The church, which was  described as “De muro fracto” (outside the city walls) in the late 12th century, probably stood on this site at the foot of Monte Foce.   An inscription on the external wall of the sacristy suggests that it was rebuilt in 1262.

The Confraternita di Santa Croce della Foce, which was first documented in the 15th century, has presided over the annual Good Friday procession in Gubbio since at least that time, apart from a period in the 18th-20th centuries when it was suppressed.  

While most of external architecture is original, the façade and the interior were re-modelled in the 16th century. 

The church was damaged in the earthquake of 1997 and has recently been closed for an overdue restoration.


The Crucifix (16th century) and the statue of Our Lady of Sorrows (19th century) on the high altar are paraded in the Good Friday procession.

Processional Standard (1517-21)

This two-sided standard on the 2nd altar on the left is the documented work of Pietro Paolo Baldinacci and the otherwise unknown “maesto Silvio”.  Each side depicts the cross of the Crucifixion with SS Ubaldus, Peter Martyr and Mary Magdalene and members of the Confraternita di Santa Croce della Foce.

Decoration of the ceiling (1601)

Giovanni Maria Baldassini was working on the coffered ceiling of the church at the time of his death in 1601.  The project marked the completion of the 16th century remodelling.  The ceiling is decorated with painted symbols of the Passion. 

Miracle of the True Cross (early 17th century)

This altarpiece, which is by/attributed to Virgilio Nucci, is [on the 2nd altar on the left].

Vision of St Charles Borromeo (early 17th century)

This altarpiece, which is signed “A.B.P” (Alessandro Brunelli da Perugia), is on the 3rd altar on the left.  It depicts St Charles Borromeo’s vision of an angel carrying the cross on which Christ was crucified and the lance that pierced His side.  A putti holding the crown of thorns kneels below.

Madonna and Child with Saints (1668)

This altarpiece on the 2nd altar on the right is attributed to Francesco Allegrini.  It depicts the Madonna and Child seated on a cloud with SS Sebastian, Ubaldus, Cosmos, Damian, Apollonia, Agatha and Ursula.  The inscription on the quiver of St Sebastian names the commissioners of the work, Giovanni Carbonara and Giovanni Paolo Gamboccio, priors of the Confraternita di Santa Croce della Foce, and gives the date.

Madonna and Child with St Trophimus (1677)

This altarpiece [where ?] depicts the Madonna and Child seated on a cloud.  St Trophimus of Arles below begs them to cure people suffering from gout.   It is probably “il quadro di San Trofimo” for which Agostino Steuchi, the Prior of the Confraternita di Santa Croce della Foce paid “il Francese” (probably Louis Dorigny) in 1677.  It might have been executed in collaboration with Francesco Allegrini.

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