The Aesthetic Evolution of Raphael at Vatican Museums

One of the best examples of the gradual evolution of Raphael’s style can be found in the Papal Apartments of the Vatican.

Four magnificent rooms known as “Le Stanze di Raffaello”  that were the Papal residence between 1507-1585.



Though the order of the rooms does not reflect  the chronology of when Raphael created the frescos, viewers can appreciate the ever changing  style of Raphael as executed into each scene. Influences of great artists such as Bramante, Michelangelo and Leonardo are evident while still maintaining the artist’s personal touch.

The first room that can be visited is the Room of Costantine, dedicated to the life of the first Christian Emperor who symbolically donated the city of Rome to the Pope in charge during his time, Pope Sylvester I and his successors . Even if this room carries an important meaning, it is the last room that Raphael painted, therefore only the preparatory cartoons were executed by the artist himself while the majority of the painting was carried out by his pupils due to Raphael’s premature death.

The second room is the Room of Heliodorus. The frescos were created towards the end of his career between 1511-1514, about 6 years before his death. The most impressive artistic achievement in this room is the Liberation of S. Peter. In this scene Raphael masters his ability to depict glowing and moving light, working in a medium that  does not allow the gradual manipulation of colors.

Effects of this kind were unparallel by Raphael’s contemporaries until the arrival of Caravaggio almost 100 years later. The frescos in this room also reflects Raphael’s observation of Michelangelo’s style in the Sistine Chapel. In fact the two artists were working in the Vatican at the same time.

The muscular density and powerful solidarity that classifies Michelangelo’s figures are borrowed by Raphael beginning with the School of Athens in the following room.

The Room of the Signature is perhaps the most celebrated works of Raphael’s career. With respect to the chronology of the artist, we are actually moving back in time, viewing the first room that he was commissioned to paint at the young age of 25.

A clear transition  in Raphael’s style is evident in viewing the Disputation of the Holy Sacrament and the School of Athens side by side.  In the latter painting is where we also see an homage to Raphael’s biggest rival. The representation of a philosopher, Heraclitus with the resemblance of  Michelangelo is prove of Raphael’s admiration for his contemporary. After seeing his masterpiece in the Sistine Chapel, Michelangelo became an idol for the young artist.

The last part of the tour shows the forth room, which lends its name to a fire that broke out in the 9th Century in a neighborhood of the Vatican called the Borgo.

Let StefanoRomeTours and their team of licensed tour guides take you back in time to relive the crucial moments that marked Raphael’s career. This description only scratches the surface of the many historically nuances that are present in Raphael’s frescos.

Do you have any favorite artists or pieces of art inside the Vatican Museum? We’d love to hear from you in the comments box below.


Thank you for stopping by and reading our blog.

with love,

the Stefano Rome Tours team 


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Rome in a Day from Civitavecchia

The Cruise Port of Civitavecchia is a very popular destination for cruises in Italy, and if you are arriving by cruise ship to the port, then you really should spend a thrilling day in Rome, one of the most fascinating and historically significant cities in the world.


We highly recommend the Rome Day From Civitavecchia Tour. This is a fabulous hassle-free way of visiting the city directly from Civitavecchia, without having to worry about how to get to Rome, or what you should see and visit when you actually reach the Eternal City.

This is because you will be picked up at the ports’ pier at 8.30 AM by your private English speaking Driver and then driven to Rome in your private deluxe vehicle, where you will be provided with an excellent day’s itinerary, before being retuned to the pier at around 5.30 PM.


Enjoy a video of our Rome in A Day from Civitavecchia shore excursion:



This tour from Stefano Rome Tours will take you through the highlights of the city, and even before reaching Rome you will be able to enjoy the beautiful and ancient Etruscan landscape  en route.

The comfortable drive to the capital takes just over an hour on the Roman countryside highway, and your personal driver will point out to you all the places of interest on the way, as well as answer any questions you may have about the tour.

Rome has numerous sights and attractions to visit, from ancient Roman ruins to baroque churches and much, much more. As you can see below in the ‘Tour Highlights’, you will in fact be covering the city’s most famous sights, such as the Colosseum, Sistine Chapel, Pantheon and Trevi Fountain, so you can be rest assured that you will get the most out of your one day tour of Rome!

As always, remember that there is a dress code on entering churches in Italy, so please make sure that your shoulders and knees are all covered.


Tour Highlights

Drive by Pyramid of Caius Cestio :: Circus Maximus :: Colosseum :: Vatican Museum :: Sistine Chapel :: St. Peter’s Basilica :: Pantheon :: Trevi Fountain

Pick up time: approximately 8.00am
Return time: approximately 5.30pm


For more information about this and other exciting shore excursions from Civitavecchia, please CLICK HERE or visit our website at We look forward to showing you our Eternal City!


Thank you for stopping by and reading our blog.

with love,

the Stefano Rome Tours team