Cloister and Archaeological Area

Begun in 1205 and completed in 1235, the cloister is the work of the artists known as the Cosmati and the Vassalletto who were celebrated Roman marble-craftsmen.

In the centre of the cloister are four squares of well-tended garden.

Around them are four covered walks protected by a low wall or podium. From this base rise elegant paired columns sculpted in various ways, some twisted, some decorated with mosaics.

The columns support round arches that run the entire periphery of the cloister.

A Latin metric inscription in letters of mosaic can be read from the garden. It runs around the three newer sides of the cloister and describes the purpose and origin of the space.

The Exhibition Area includes the 13th century Cloister, the Pinacoteca, the Chapel of the Relics, the Exhibition Gallery and other annexed rooms. Numerous remains from the ancient basilica and works of great historical and artistic value are preserved.

In the archaeological site there are the remains of a monastery, of which till now no archaeological trace was known (5th-7th century); remains of a portico with columns that, according to a testimony of an historian of the time, connected the Aurelian Walls with the ancient Basilica of St. Paul; various artistic findings.

The ticket price is € 4.00 per person. For groups of over ten visitors the price is € 3.00 per person (the group guide is free).