The article examines the restoration of San Crisogono in relation to the changing fortunes of its patron, Cardinal Scipione Borghese, nephew of Pope Paul V. Work began with the insertion of a ceiling, prompted by Cardinal Pietro Aldobrandini's slightly earlier ceiling in the nearby Santa Maria in Trastevere. By the time the ceiling was installed, however, Paul V had died and Scipione was enduring the unsympathetic Ludovisi pontificate. The eventual upgrading of Borghese's intervention in the church to a full-scale restoration is set against Borghese's social revival following the ascension of the Barberini in 1623. In this environment, the church's extensive inscriptorial and emblematic imagery has a distinct meaning, albeit one transmitted via contemporary ideas of magnificence and cardinalate duties. Building on existing physical reconstructions and drawing mainly from archival sources, the article identifies a distinctive class of patron, peculiar to papal Rome-the disenfranchised nephew.

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