San Bernardo alle Terme Church Rome
History and description
It was constructed in 1598 in one of the round buildings that denoted the corners of the Diocletian baths, and used to function as the spheristerium (where ball games were held).
The church was initially gifted to the Feuillants, a Cistercian order of French origin. After the French revolution this order disbanded and the church (with the adjacent convent) was donated to the Congregation of Bernard of Clairvaux, who also gave his name to the church.
The structure of the San Bernardo alle Terme church is round and reminds one of the Pantheon. Like the Pantheon the church has a round ceiling (with a diameter of 22 meters) and its only source of light is the oculus at the top.
The eight, rather large, mannerist statues of saints that are to be found in niches in the church were made by Camillo Mariani around the year 1600.
The beautiful Chapel of Saint Franciscus was added later.