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Spring Chapels

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Spring Chapels
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Photo Comments

View of two of the three large niches that are built over the three springs of the church of San Paolo alle Tre Fontane.

According to tradition, it was here that the Apostle Paul was executed June 29, 67.  The tradition indicates that he was beheaded and that his head bounced on the ground three times and three fountains sprang from the ground where the head bounced.

The three springs were shut down in 1950 due to water contamination.

On the floor in the foreground is a depiction of the four seasons of the year.


The current church was built in 1599.  An earlier church was built here in the 5th century A.D.  A monastic community was established here in 641.  St. Bernard stayed here during his time in Rome—1138–40.  The Abby contains three churches.