Key to Umbria

Rocco di Tommaso was the son of another sculptor, Tommaso da Lugnano.  He began his career working under his father in Vicenza.  The Venetians accused him of treason in 1510 during the brief occupation of Vicenza by the Emperor Maximilian I after the Battle of Agnadello: he had accepted a commission for an Imperial eagle that replaced the Lion of St Mark in the Piazza dei Signori. 

Rocco di Tommaso moved to Spello with his family in 1512, probably under the patronage of the Baglioni family.  His last work in Umbria was at the Santuario di Mongiovino in 1526.  He then returned to Vicenza but died there soon after.


Abbazia di Sant’ Eutizio

Monument to SS Eutychius and Spes (1514)

This monument in the Abbazia di Sant’ Eutizio is attributed to Rocco di Tommaso.


Porta di Sant’ Antonio

The Commune restored the medieval gate of Porta Sant’ Antonio to a design by Rocco di Tommaso in 1516, when Duke Francesco Maria della Rovere of Urbino threatened Perugia.


Pulpits (1519)

Rocco di Tommaso designed these pulpits on the pillars framing the tribune of the  Duomo.  They incorporated statues of (respectively) SS Lawrence and Herculanus [that possibly came from the monument (13th century) to Pope Martin IV that was originally in the old Duomo???].

The bishop’s throne (1520-4), which was built by Ciancio di Pierfrancesco da Perugia to Rocco di Tommaso’s design.


Santa Maria Maggiore

Ciborium and Altars (1512-5)

Works by Rocco di Tommaso in Santa Maria Maggiore include:

  1. the ciborium on the high altar (illustrated here); and
  2. two altars on the pilasters that flank the presbytery, which no longer survive.

He first negotiated a contract for the altarpieces for his new altars with Giannicola di Paolo in 1520, but this contract was never honoured.  The work was then commissioned from the elderly Perugino in 1521. 

Rocco di Tommaso also designed the second bell tower, the so-called Campanile dell’ Annunziata, which was built behind and to the left of the church in 1527.


Sant’ Emiliano

Altare del SS. Sacramento (1521-5)

The Confraternita del Sacramento, which was formed in Sant’ Emiliano in 1503, commissioned this altar from Rocco di Tommaso, using a bequest from Virginia Procacci.  The altar contains three niches:
  1. In the central niches, Rocco di Tommaso carved fine reliefs of angels to the sides of the tabernacle for the Sacraments.

  2. The niches to the sides contain figures of the Virgin and St Joseph by Mattia di Gaspare da Como.

The altar was dismantled in 1733 and its surviving components were stored but forgotten.  They were re-discovered and recomposed in Sant’ Emiliano in 1850, but suffered further disruption during the reconstruction of the church in 1856-93.  The altar was reassembled in its present location on the left of the nave in 1891. 

Santa Maria di Pietrarossa

Tabernacle (16th century)

This carved marble tabernacle on the 2nd pillar on the right of Santa Maria di Pietrarossa is attributed to Rocco di Tommaso.  The subjects depicted are:

  1. the Madonna and Child, in polychrome relief, with God the Father and angels above; and

  2. statues in niches of:

  3. St Emilianus; and

  4. St John the Baptist.

Read more

A. Bonaca, “L' Altare di Mastro Rocco nella Chiesa di Sant’ Emiliano in Trevi”, Bollettino della Deputazione di Storia Patria per l’ Umbria, 31 (1934) 59-91, an extract of which is published on the website of Pro Trevi

Return to Art in: Norcia    Perugia    Spello    Trevi

Return to “Foreign” Sculptors in Umbria.


Rocco di Tommaso (died 1529) 

Umbria: Home   Cities   History   “Foreign” Sculptors in Umbria   Hagiography   Contact

Rocco di Tommaso in:  Norcia    Perugia    Spello    Trevi    Todi