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Rome, Italy

The Wax-Encased Remains of Blessed Anna Maria Taigi

The mystical nun whose incorrupt corpse still attracts the faithful.  

Housed in the Basilica of San Crisogono, is a small chapel with a glass coffin. Inside are the remains of Anna Maria Taigi, covered in a wax visage made from her death mask.

Born in Sienna, Anna Maria and her family moved to Rome when she was six years old. She later married and had seven children. Known for her charity and devotion, she joined the Secular Trinitarians in 1802. Of the many holy gifts attributed to her, the most impressive was the “miracle of the mystic globe-sun.” She would have visions of a sun-shaped globe that held images of current, past, and secret events. 

When she died in 1837 it was only a few days before pilgrims started to visit her resting place despite a cholera epidemic (which some believe she was holding off while alive). In 1868 her coffin was opened and though her clothes had deteriorated, her body was found to be incorrupt. When examined again in 1920, she had begun to decompose and so her visible hands and face were covered in wax replicas. Pope Benedict the XV declared her protector of families and mothers in 1920. Special masses are still held in her chapel to this day. 

Know Before You Go

Two blocks south of Tiber Island off of Viale di Trastevere.