Key to Umbria: Narni

Santa Restituta (ca. 1563-1604)

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Paolo Orsini di Narni and Bishop Pierdonato Cesi invited Sister Eusebia Borghese to establish a convent of Poor Clares here that was dedicated to the Roman martyr, St Restituta. 

The convent ran into financial difficulties in the 16th century, but recovered in 1610, when Paolo Emilio Cesi, Marquis of Riano left a substantial bequest to the community at the behest of Bishop Giambattista Tosca.  This money was used (inter alia) for a new high altar.

The few remaining nuns from Santa Margherita moved here in the 19th century, when their nunnery was suppressed.


Visitation (early 17th century)

This altarpiece on the high altar is by Giuseppe Cesari, il Cavalier d’ Arpino.

Birth of St John the Baptist (ca. 1695)

This altarpiece was documented on the high altar of the church of San Giovanni Decollato di Narni in 1780.  This church [where was it??] was demolished in ca. 1860, and this and other works of art there were transferred to San Francesco.   It was restored in 2003 and subsequently moved to Santa Restituta.

The restoration, which could not completely remedy the damage sustained by the altarpiece, confirmed its traditional attribution to Antonio Gherardi.  It seems to belong to the later period of his career, when he also worked in Gubbio.

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