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Church of San Filippo [Saint Philip]



The building, raised to the status of collegiate church in 1530 and entrusted to the Oratorians in 1664, was constructed on the demolished medieval parish church of Santa Maria, of which only the façade remains. The constitution of the Congregation dates back to 1671 which saw the start of the major restoration project overseen by the Roman architect Giambattista Contini. The outcome, which shows Contini’s training under Borromeo, bestowed the interior of the building with a single pseudo-elliptical chamber, thus removing the quadrature of the existing medieval shell, with two minor altars on the lateral walls between pairs of lesenes with composite capitals supporting a Vignolesque trabeation. The ceiling, with lunette and barrel vaults, is richly decorated with its depiction of two episodes in the life of the church, Saint Philip in Adoration of the Virgin and Glory of Saint Philip, on central medallions, and other allegorical figures representing the Theological Virtues and the Oratorian Virtues. Paolo Marini (?-1695) from San Severino Marche painted Old Testament Stories, the Figures of the Doctors of the Church and the Evangelists and the work portraying the Madonna, the Trinity and the Guardian Angel on the first minor altar on the right. Donations by the Marchesi family from Cingoli produced the painting of Saint Teresa of Avila Speared by an Angel in 1688 created by the artist Carlo Cignani (1628-1719) from Bologna. Also worthy of note is the fine choir in the counter-façade and an admirable sacristy with an irregular octagonal plan by Contini.