Talk:Santa Maria Maggiore

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The article badly needs a lot more information on this extremely famous and important cycle, instead of the vague mention currently here. Johnbod 13:51, 9 March 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Aedes Junonis Lucinae[edit]

A quick google around outside of wikipedia reveals that Sta Maria Maggiore was built in the area of Aedes Junonis Lucinae, or the Temple of Juno in the Grove, an extremely important cultic and administrative site in Ancient Rome. In fact, it is speculated that some of the columns in the current basilica were taken from that structure. Oddly, this claim nowhere appears on the wiki page. Instead, they come from "somewhere". Hm, is someone here uncomfortable with the fact that there was a temple dedicated to the goddess of marriage and childbirth for 700 years before the first Christian basilica was built there? Instead we get a detailed rendition of a medieval fantasy story about the origins of the basilica? Really? Where is the neutral point of view? [[1]] [[2]] (Second citation is from a book published in 1929--this is not new news. Heck, it's not news at all. Maybe we should call it olds.) (talk) 17:28, 27 April 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Boo-yah, looks like I am right: "The Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore ("St. Mary Major") was built by Pope Sixtus III in 432-440 A.D. on the highest point of the Cispian Hill. The church reflects the doctrine that Mary was the Mother of God (Theotokos), which was adopted by the Council of Ephesus in 431. The site was occupied by an earlier Roman structure that underwent several building phases,as has been determined by various archaeological excavations undertaken since 1966. Among the finds is a famous painted calendar dating from the late fourth century A.D. No evidence has been found to confirm the tradition that there was an earlier Christian basilica on this site erected in the fourth century A.D. by Pope Liberius.Because of the tradition, S. Maria Maggiore is sometimes called the Basilica Liberiana." [[3]] Accompanied by excellent illustration of the 5th century basilica vs. today. More here [[4]] Looks like the actual basilica is built over (at the least) a fancy house and some baths. (talk) 19:52, 27 April 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I don't see how that supports the original claim that it was Juno's temple. (Incidentally, the early forms of this page claimed it was built over a temple of Cybele. Might've been inaccurate but it seems that the grove of Juno thing is a fairly fringe theory from a single scholar per Digital Augustan Rome.)
That said, obviously the article needs much more about the Roman ruins before and still under the current building. — LlywelynII 18:18, 17 August 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Liberian Basilica[edit]

When was the Liberian Basilica rededicated to the BVM? The article is mute on this point. --13:49, 2 January 2006 (UTC)

According to the legend, Liberius himself dedicated it to the Virgin to celebrate the apparition. Sixtus III rebuilt it in 432 to celebrate the declaration of the Theotokos by the Council of Ephesus, so it was dedicated to Mary at least from that time on. Rwflammang 16:21, 31 May 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The last sentence reads: "Dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary under the title of Our Lady of the Snows, local Roman Catholics commemorate the miracle on each anniversary by dropping white rose petals from the dome during the feast mass." --I suspect the writer meant that the church--not the local Roman Catholics--is dedicated to the BVM. If so, the grammar of this sentence needs fixing. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Erasmus9084 (talkcontribs) 15:20, 15 May 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]


Article refers to a column of an up-ended canon erected by Pope Clement XIII immediately after the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre of Protestants. However, Pope Clement did not become Pope until 1592. The massacre occurred in 1572, four months after Pope Gregory XIII took office. The Pope at the time of the massacre was Pope Gregory XIII and he was known to have celebrated the massacre as evidenced by the medals he had struck commemorating the occasion. I recommend that Pope Clement XIII be changed to Pope Gregory XIII.


1st debate ("Title")

This page needs to be moved to the more appropriate title "Saint Mary Major Basilica." "Saint Mary Major" is an incomplete reference. "Major Basilica" are inseparable words as they reference a specific type of basilica. --Gerald Farinas 15:34, 11 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Can someone point me to any recent material which uses the "Mary Major" anglicization, rather than Maria Maggiore? -- Hotlorp 22:35, 12 Apr 2005 (UTC)
I had similar thoughts earlier on. I thought it was just me so I just kept my mouth shut. --Gerald Farinas 00:31, 13 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Agreed - I've never seen it called "Mary Major", always Santa Maria Maggiore, although a Google search inevitably finds some links. Compare, for example, San Pietro in Vincoli. -- ALoan (Talk) 10:17, 13 Apr 2005 (UTC)
The other articles on Italian basilicas use their proper Italian names because they are known by their Italian names, even by English-speaking people: Basilica Palladiana, Basilica della Santissima Annunziata di Firenze, Basilica di San Lorenzo di Firenze, Basilica di San Miniato al Monte, Basilica di San Zanipolo, Basilica di Santa Croce di Firenze, Basilica di Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari, Basilica di Santa Maria Novella, Basilica di Santa Maria della Salute. That establishes precedence to move this article to the proper title, "Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore" with a redirect from its more uncommonly used English translation. --Gerald Farinas 12:39, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)
The Vatican Information Service and the other news services of the Holy See refer to it is the Basilica of Saint Mary Major in all English correspondence. --Mm35173 14:55, 19 July 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I am changing the caption on the photograph. It currently reads " of worship dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary," which leaves a dangerous grammatical ambiguity, considering that certain non-litugical Christians have the misconception that Catholics, Anglicans and Orthodox "worship Mary". --Mm35173 14:55, 19 July 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I am one of those who think english-users should be able to look up articles without being forced to learn other languages in the process. I know english-users have a poor track record of being multilingual, but this is not way to solve that problem.

I have no clue how you intend to scope the usage of one version versus the other. A mere google search shows a dispaging difference in favor of the English version (remember to set to search webpages only in English on your preferences). If there is some other way, plz enlighten me. As for the Vatican using the Italian version, infallibility applies to faith and morals, not the English language, and if you left that up to those Italian editors there, we would all be speaking Italian. The Jackal God 21:23, 22 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Im not sure if this is a voting point or not. I vote keeping the main article under Santa Maria Maggiore. If someone wants to change it to just "Santa Maria Maggiore" or Basilica of .. that would also be fine. I think Mary Major just doesn't ring true, Mary Major sounds like an Hollywood screen name. I think we should respect names whenever possible. The same applies for Charlie Borromeo (Carlo Borromeo), and some other. My 2 cents. CARAVAGGISTI 22:43, 22 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Is the issue over titling the article Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore? That would be fine, except that it's already redirected here, so there's no problem for users. Or is this about retitling the article to Basilica of Big Holy Mary? --Wetman 23:14, 22 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The issue is that the basilica is known as St Mary Major's or the Basilica of St Mary Major. If it affects someone's uncultured sensibilities (or unfamiliar with things Catholic), so be it; that doesn't change what it's known as in English. One studied in Latin and other things humanistic would not be so bothered by "Major" following a word. Likewise, whether Canis Major sounds like a fat stogie is irrelevant to that astronomical designation. Viva Wyclif, Vatican II, render it English. The Jackal God 23:28, 22 February 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Nonsense - is always called Sta Maria Maggiore in English. Johnbod 13:49, 9 March 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Sorry Johnbod, but it is NOT always called "Sta Maria Maggiore" in English. You're apply your prejudice and POV here. In fact, if you look at the historical convention in English speaking countries, especially in North America, it's only been in the last 5-10 years that we've decided to be "multi-cultural" that using the local language of the object has even become popular. I'm pretty sure that my St. Andrew Missal (Usus Antiquor) that dates to 1945, has it rendered properly into English as St. Mary Major.Caisson 06 (talk) 18:58, 10 March 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Well, here's another English-speaker weighing in on the Sta Maria Maggiore side. I've never heard it called "St Mary Major" until today. Sounds sort of English (the ethnicity) to me.... Well, this Irish-American is not at all sorry to inform you that the majority of native English speakers in the world today are not English. Given that the arch-priest of this basilica is also an American (Bernie "No Respect for Rule of" Law, hiding from the long arm of American justice), I suggest you stick your twee English appellation under your hat until such time as the Pontiff places Maria Maggiore under the supervision of the Archbishop of Cantebury. (talk) 17:12, 27 April 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]
2nd Debate ("Name")

For ye that like to make broad pronouncements like "nonsense - is always called..." can you please explain to us plebs how you arrive to such conclusions, inspite of the fact that a google search states otherwise (2.5 hits for <<saint mary major's -"santa maria maggiore">>) as well as the personal experience of those who have heard it so phrased in english on both sides of the Atlantic, including in Rome when speaking English. The curiousity compels me, and i never got an answer from Gerald Farinas who is another big fan of italian usage. The Jackal God 17:49, 9 March 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Given the varieties of Saint, St, S. etc in both languages, this needs to be excluded from the search terms. Then the Ghits are:

  • "mary major" vs "maria maggiore"
  • Web (English Lang): 90,300 vs 290,0000
  • Scholar: 134 vs 1,590
  • Books: 677 vs 1,414

In addition, on a quick look, more of the maria maggiore's are about the church in Rome, rather than the feast day, churches in England etc, and indeed women called Mary Major.

I am a great supporter of English names, where they are the commonest name used in English (see Talk:Palazzo del Te), but not here. Johnbod 18:04, 9 March 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

ok, i was just wondering how you arrived to the conclusion that it was "nonsense" and "always" used. for what it's worth, "maria maggiore" -di gets a third of the results "maria maggiore." anyways, are these google search result comparisons your method? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by The Jackal God (talkcontribs) 23:15, 9 March 2007 (UTC).Reply[reply]
nonsense referred to your categorical statements; always is obviously an exaggeration, although not I think for art history. Actually adding -di only drops it from 291k to 238k if you were searching English language sites only, and most of the di's seem to be in English.

The online free Britannica extract goes with Maria Maggiore, without mentioning the alternative. Johnbod 03:13, 10 March 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

hmm. i don't know. My google search without the "di" revealed 107,000. As for website usage, the websites of the episcopal conferences of US and England&Wales use Mary Major:Maria Maggiore 10:2 and 7:1 respectively. Cardinal Law's bio page on the Vatican website uses Mary Major. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by The Jackal God (talkcontribs) 15:29, 10 March 2007 (UTC).Reply[reply]
Mary Major is the Church translation of the feast day etc. Maria Maggiore is used virtually exclusively by art historians, who I think clearly have more influence on everyone else, through guide books etc. Johnbod 17:40, 10 March 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Hot dawg, we have a winner! Exactly, art history calls it Sta Maria Maggiore. If you are an art student or interested in art history and visit Rome, you are looking for the Basicila of Maria Maggiore, not Saint Mary Major, whoever the heck that is. (talk) 17:17, 27 April 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]
who is making categorical statements now? First of all, if you perused those websites i mentioned, you would have seen that they refer to the Basilica, not a feast day. It's not clear to me that art historians have more influence, at least not in this sphere. It's one thing to use the word Italian word "baldecchino" in place of its English counterpart (which i did not know existed until a few days ago), but let's ponder whether the Basilicas don't fall into 'technical jargon of art history.' The Jackal God 20:11, 10 March 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I meant that Mary Major is obviously the official Church version, so used in various contexts. As to the relative degrees of influence, and technical jargon, I think the ghits tell the story. Many of the mary major ghits are not concerned with the basilica, as noted above. I'm not sure where you are going with this; do you really think a vote to move the page would succeed, given all the above? Apart from anything else, St Mary Major sounds odd grammatically in English, however venerable the translation. Johnbod 20:34, 10 March 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
i think we should look into this more.
here are the ghits for Maria Maggiore
Results 1 - 10 of about 109,000 English pages for
"maria maggiore" -di
here are the ghits for Mary Major
Results 1 - 10 of about 66,600 English pages for
"Mary Major" -tv -"devon. england"
which leaves us with a ratio of ~2:3. You say the italian renditon is preferred term in art history; while the English-speaking bishop's conferences overwhelming use the English version, which may or may not be indicative of English-speakers in that context. Moreover, given those two bodies of users, are ghits describe comparative sizes accurately. my suspicion is art history would be over-represented relative to Church/religious community usage viz-a-viz ghits. there's no need to rush a vote at this point. let's find additional ways of gauging usage. The Jackal God 10:21, 12 March 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hmm - Basilica + "Mary Major" in English = 49,200 [5]

Basilica + "Maria Maggiore" in English = 154k hits [6]. Why exclude "di" ? Plenty of English sites, like this one, use a full Italian name, and plenty more have a "di" from some street or church nearby in the text: " At Vasari's time S. Maria Maggiore was almost isolated among large villas chiefly Pope Sixtus V's Villa di Termini." - and so on. You are excluding these. Personally I would have gone, like the Vatican, with "Basilica of ...", and would support this, if you feel the change worth pushing for. Johnbod 15:50, 12 March 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

i am all about going w/ the Vatican. see the Holy See's homepage in English.
"Basicila Saint Mary Major"
I follow the link with trepidation. Oh, the Latin bias! Sure, French and Spanish have the title translated, but not English or German.
Gli italiani consideranno brutti i nostri linguaggi germanici. non e justo. parlo con il papa. cierto che il papa sia simpatico. remediamo quest' errore subito.
I'm young. I'll wait. Couple more non-Italian pontiffs, the title will be in English on the Vatican website.
The Jackal God 18:58, 27 March 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
again, more info


Basilica of Saint Peter ...

Basilica of Saint John Lateran ...

Basilica of Saint Mary Major ...

Basilica of Saint Paul Outside the Walls ... The Jackal God 19:05, 27 March 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Since the above have been searching for "names" perhaps we should take a step back and see just what are the choices for the word MAGGORIE/MAJOR?

I can only suggest that since it seems we have been writing about "Mary the Mother of Jesus" that perhaps in the old Catholic thought there was at least on meaning of Maggorie/Major that most of you have avoided? And that is this meaning; "law of legal age: of the age at which a person is deemed fully responsible for his or her actions." Yes, the question was then as it is today in some circles, is the question of was "Mary" legal to carry a child?

Therefore, any source that calls her "Mary Major" has made it to the choice as to wether she was a "child" or a woman! That is, she had a "period"!

Regards, (talk) 03:15, 25 December 2012 (UTC)Ronald L. HughesReply[reply]

I would like to mention that all of the other basilicas have their English translated names. I am renaming this to reflect that, and the fact that this is the ENGLISH wikipedia. Aunva6 (talk) 22:30, 1 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
3rd Debate ("This is the English wikipedia...")

I read with some amusement the comment, "this is the ENGLISH wikipedia" in the name change log. If this is the English wikipedia, why is the new name Santa Mary Major, instead of Saint Mary Major? Rwflammang (talk) 02:09, 2 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

well.... cause when I moved it, i missed the sata-->saint part.... i tried to move it, but there was a redirect in the way Aunva6 (talk) 02:33, 2 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The name change is ridiculous. The word maggiore and major are not equivalent. Maggiore has a connotation of larger or greater than. A major event is a large or great event, but there can be two major events, only one can be maggiore. The correct translation would be "Mary Most Major", which while alliterative sounds like the name of a Broadway Play. Whatever rule is used to make this translation a reality has exceeded the bounds here of good sense.Rococo1700 (talk) 08:13, 2 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

how so? the infobox title already said it, and since this is the English wiki, and this is about a Major basilica, it seems appropriate to me, whatever the supposed literal translation may be. it seems pretty damned dumb to have an Italian page title on the English Wikipedia, unless it is the name of a person, or no english equivalent is used. and if you just translated the word, keep in mind that most languages do not work in word-by-word translation, and depend on the context of the sentence. Aunva6 (talk) 08:41, 2 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Whether the English name is ridiculous or not, it is in fact the English name. "Saint Mary Major" is how Santa Maria Maggiore (or more to the point, Basilica Sanctae Mariae Majoris) has been translated by anglophone Catholics for some time now, including in liturgical documents approved by episcopal conferences, the Holy See, and ICEL. Rwflammang (talk) 21:17, 2 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
How so? As I stated, the name used is not one that gives an adequate translation, and that is true regardless of how many others, including the Holy See and ICEL, have mistranslated it so. For all I know, the documents you state are Google translations, with little attempt at true translation. Again, my complaint stands: Santa Maria Maggiore does NOT translate to St Mary Major. The maggiore was meant to state that this was the pre-eminent church of Mary in Rome, if not everywere. I mean this argument is a "major" pain in the butt, but is not the "maggiore" issue in the heart of the universe. The comment that this is a "major basilica" does not hold here. This is not the "Basilica Maggiore di Santa Maria", if so then I would acknowledge the introduction of that argument. Again "Majoris" does not translate to simply "Major", it translates to Most Major and refers to Mary. I am no expert in Wikipedia policy but there must be an exception when we speak of proper names; it seems by this logic that the city of Jerez de la Frontera in Andalucia, should be called Sherry of the Frontier, (my apologies to the prostitutes of that name). And as to anglophone names, are we going to revert to calling Livorno to the anglophone Leghorn. I am sorry to insult Queen's English, but there are places outside of the former empire that resist translation.Rococo1700 (talk) 04:30, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I told you how so. Its a proper name; the adequacy of the alleged "translation" is irrelevant. The translations I mention are the work of ICEL, not Google. (Did you even read the comment you are responding to?) They are approved by the Holy See and the relevant episcopal conferences. BTW, Majoris does not mean "most major"; it's the genitive comparative of magnus, and so it means bigger, greater, or older, among other things, the meaning of which is not completely incompatible with the English adjective "major".Rwflammang (talk) 16:50, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • The point is that, as demonstrated time & again higher up on the page Santa Maria Maggiore is overwhelmingly the WP:COMMONNAME in English (unlike say, Saint Peter's) and it should go to that. When someone can be bothered to launch a proper move request it will. Johnbod (talk) 04:46, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Google searches include more than references to English usage and do not provide genuine evidence for the idea that English-speakers generally refer to this church by its name in Italian rather than in English. There is no reason to name Saint Mary Major's differently from Saint John Lateran's, Saint Peter's in the Vatican and Saint Paul's outside the Walls. Esoglou (talk) 07:56, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Esoglou, the problems are:
1) that you are wrong on the fact of the preference of English Users, please refer to Johnbod's earlier post examining ghits (google hits) for the various terms, and breaking them down by their specificity. Johnbod makes the point that there is overwhelming evidence that English-speakers generally refer to this church by its Italian Name.
2) I am willing to agree with the translations of Saint John Lateran's, Saint Peter's in the Vatican and Saint Paul's outside the Walls; these names do accurately translate the name and correspond to the understanding of the name in Italian. St Mary Major does not, no matter how much you try. Major is not Maggiore. Again, a traffic jam in a city is a major problem; an two ton asteroid hurtling to your city, is a "maggiore" problem. But the translation becomes problematic then: the terms "Most Major Mary", "Very Very Major Mary", and "Extremely Major Mary", "Thoroughly Major Mary", or "Wowza Wowza Maor Mary" just do not catch the glint of overwhelming but dignified reverence of the term Maggiore. I would accept an accurate or appropriate translation, but you are offering a wrong and inappropriate one. This argument is troubling, because we point out a real problem, and some merely deflect it with either some erroneous fact (erroneous ghits) or arbitrary reference to a translated document, that may likely just copied in and out of Google translate. I have not seen any proofread art textbook refer to this as St Mary Major.
Please provide specific instructions on how we can revert this or have this change voted back or how can we launch a proper request to revert the name. Please just do it! This is probably the least "Maggiore" inconvenience in my life.
Rococo1700 (talk) 16:31, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I agree with Esoglou. The English name should be used. The ghits do not begin to convince me otherwise. The existence of the church predates the existence of both the English and Italian languages, so there is no reason for us to bow to the Italian usage here, or to regard the English as some sort of translation of the Italian. Arguments that the English name is the name of the feast and not of the church are unconvincing; the feast is for the dedication of the church, and not vice versa. The official documents I've seen that are written in English almost without exception refer to the church by its English and not its Italian name. In English-language history texts, when it's not called "Mary Major", it's called "the Liberian basilica"; I can't think of any instance of its being called by its Italian name. Rwflammang (talk)
If I may be so crass as to respond to my own comment, let me note that the first occurrence of the English adjective "major" recorded in the Oxford English Dictionary is from 1400, the poem The Stacions of Rome, verse 475: At seinte Marie þe maiour þer is a chirche of gret honour. I doubt we'll find any instances of Maria Magiorre in an English text that pre-dates that! Rwflammang (talk) 19:21, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Who cares! What has 14th century Middle English usage to do with anything? If you "can't think of any instance of its being called by its Italian name" it's because you haven't looked. Johnbod (talk) 20:29, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I changed it to be consistent with the other basilicas, such as St. John Lateran's, and st.Paul outside the walls. there is no good reason to have this in italian, considering that it is the ENGLISH wiki, and the vast majority of readers speak English, not italian. Aunva6 (talk) 17:21, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
WP:COMMONNAME is the primary policy for article names. That's it. Please stop these off-topic arguments. Johnbod (talk) 20:29, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
4th Debate ("Save Santa Maria Maggiore")

In English-language history texts, when it's not called "Mary Major", it's called "the Liberian basilica: can't think of any instance of its being called by its Italian name.

Again, I beg to differ on the facts, but Rwflammang is not being truthful in this claim. It is unequivocally false. First of all, he quotes as authority a use by ICEL, but he has not clarified what means or goals ICEL used to label Santa Maria Maggiore. For all I know, they used the equivalent of a automatic translator. Maybe their goal was for every word, name, etc to be translated, regardless of usage. This has less validity than the proofread and validated use of the the term Santa Maria Maggiore for example in Enciclopedia Brittanica or in the major art history textbooks of the last century.

No, Brittanica does not trump ICEL. The notion that ICEL used an automatic translator is laughable, as is the notion that it wasn't proofread or validated. It is more likely that they just decided to use a pre-existing 14th century-or-older name of the basilica in their translation into English, rather than "translate" the name into Italian. Rwflammang (talk) 00:03, 4 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You aren't seriously telling me that I can think of instances? If you are, then that is an untruth. Rwflammang (talk) 20:11, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

A search of Google books was performed using "Maria Maggiore" and "Mary Major": the former identifies the following titles

"MARIA MAGGIORE" (Results in English)

  1. The Sistine Chapel at S. Maria Maggiore: Sixtus V and the art of ... - Volume 1 (1987)
  2. I mosaici della Basilica di S. Maria Maggiore. [Illustr.] - (1956)
  3. Calendar of entries in the Papal registers relating to Great Britain - Page 306 (1906)
  4. Image and Relic: Mediating the Sacred in Early Medieval Rome - Page 70 (2002)
  5. The English historical review - Volume 36 - Page 573 (1921)
  6. Age of Spirituality: A Symposium [held in November 1977 by the ... - Page 52 (1980)
  7. Images of the Mother of God: Perceptions of the Theotokos InByzantium - Page 33 (2005)
  8. Early Christian and Byzantine Art: Texte Imprimé - Page 352 (1986)
  9. An inventory of choirbooks at S. Maria Maggiore, Bergamo, January 1628 (1967)
  10. Alexander VI's Ceiling for S. Maria Maggiore in Rome (1985)
  11. Carolingian restorations of the mosaics of S. Maria Maggiore in Rome (1977)
  12. St. Peter's in the Vatican - Page xiii (2005)
  13. The Rome of Pope Paschal I: Papal Power, Urban Renovation, Church ... - Page 102 (2010)
  14. Space, Time and Architecture: The Growth of a New Tradition - Page 86 (1967)
  15. The Architecture of Rome: An Architectural History in 400 ... - Page 365 (1998)
  16. Art and Architecture in Italy, 1600-1750: The High Baroque, 1625-1675 - Volume 2 - Page 189 (1999)
  17. The Sixtine and Pauline Tombs in Sta. Maria Maggiore: An ...(1989)
  18. Giovan Pietro Bellori: The Lives of the Modern Painters, Sculptors ... - Page 467 (2005)
  19. Experiencing Architecture 2e - Page 244 (1964)
  20. Musicians of S. Maria Maggiore Rome, 1600-1700: a social and ... - Page 68 (1984)
  21. Sturgis' Illustrated Dictionary of Architecture and Building: An ... - Page 595 (1989)
  22. Fodor's Italy 2011 - Page 951 (2011)
  23. A World History of Art (2005)
  24. Fodor's Rome - Page 444
  25. Likeness and Presence: A History of the Image Before the Era of Art - Page 73 (1997)
  26. The Tempietto del Clitunno near Spoleto. Text (1998) - Page 280 (1998)

I would consider the books by Hugh Honour and Rudolf Wittkower, to be among the main history of art and architecture textbooks of the last century, and among the best reviews of Roman art and architecture. The citations are from throughout the English-speaking world across the last one hundred years or more. All of the English titles reference the Basilica in Rome.

I am truly sorry that you spent so much time on this. I should have clarified. When I mentioned "history texts", I was not referring to art history. In fact, I have never read an art history text in my life. Mary Major is important enough to actually warrant a small role in general history texts, including the history of Rome, the history of the Catholic church, and the history of European pilgrimages. Rwflammang (talk) 00:15, 4 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]


  1. New junior cook book (1989) author: Mary Major Recipes with detailed instructions for making breakfasts, snacks, sandwiches, main dishes, and desserts.
  2. Stir-fries (1994) Joanne G. Fullan, Mary Major Williams: classic oriental to contemporary stir-fry combinations, reliable recipes that work.
  3. A Sinner's Eye View (2009) As a 20th century salute and 21st century preamble in prose, only intended for mature audiences.
  4. Cakes (1995) Better Homes and Gardens, Joanne G. Fullan, Mary Major Williams: recipes for coffee cakes, tortes and layer cakes, pound cakes, angel and sponge cakes, and chocolate cakes, and includes frosting recipes
  5. Low-fat meals (1990) low-fat dishes such as entrees, salads, and desserts, explains the relationship between fat, cholesterol, and health, and includes a chart showing fat and cholesterol content of a variety of foods
  6. St. Mary Major, the parish church of Ilchester, Somerset: notes on ... (1947)
  7. The world is my cinema (1947) Emanuel W. Robson, Mary Major Robson
  8. Mary Major (2007) Fayne Ansley, Columbia University. Writing Division
  9. Genealogies of Virginia Families from the William and Mary College
  10. Major Vices (2009): Though they'd rather be boiled in oil, Judith McMonigle Flynn and her cantankerous cousin Renie have agreed to cater a seventy-fifth birthday bash for their batty old Uncle Boo Major, the billionaire breakfast mush magnate.
  11. A Sermon Preached at the Parish Church of Saint Mary Major .(1819). William Hart COLERIDGE (Bishop of Barbados.)
  12. Architectural Drawings of St. Mary Major, Ilchester, 1877 (1982)
  13. Guide to the Museum of the Patriarchal Basilica of St. Mary Major Michał Jagosz - 2003
  14. 8 Plays from Nowhere - Page 11 (2008)
  15. In defense of moovie (1940) Mary Major Robson, Sir Philip Sidney - 1940 - No preview
  16. Spectacular desserts (1920) Shelli McConnell, Mary Jo Plutt, Mary Major Williams - 1992
  17. The Boone Family: A Genealogical History of the Descendants of ... - Page 494
  18. We Learn about Mary and Her Feast Days Teaching Edition: Handbook ... - Page 3 (2011) The book contains each feast on the universal Roman calendar, with the exception of the feast of the dedication of the Basilica of St Mary Major. In addition to

the universal feasts, Mary and Her Feast Days includes the feast of Our Lady of ...

  1. Rev. William Buckler, rector of St. Mary Major, Ilchester, 1837-1876
  2. New Casserole Cook Book (1988) Mary Major

Of all these citations, only two refer to Santa Maria Maggiore. One of those is a cookbook; and #@%#&! Fracturing Fricasee, most of the others are cookbooks. I knew that when I think of St Mary Major the vision of sponge cakes and low-fat stir-fry always comes to mind.

Second point, the term Liberian Basilica refers to an ancient basilica on the Esquiline, likely on the spot where Santa Maria Maggiore was built, and from which Santa Maria Maggiore likely appropriated spolia.<ref> | Metropolitan Museum of Art: Guide ]</ref> The cited guide from the Met Museum does use the title St Mary Major in parenthesis, but still uses as a primary title Maria Maggiore.

I'm glad to see that we both agree that the name Liberian basilica should not be used. Rwflammang (talk) 00:05, 4 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
5th Debate ("The existence of the church predates the existence of both the English and Italian languages, so there is no reason for us to bow to the Italian usage here, or to regard the English as some sort of translation of the Italian")

Since when does the name not have to be a translation of its name? If you wish you can use a translation of the Latin name that predated the Italian. It still does not translate to Major. In Latin, the name is likely Maria Maior or Mary the Greater, that still does not translate to mayor.

I do not wish to translate the name. You are projecting. Rwflammang (talk) 20:20, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Rwflammang quotes the use of "maiour" in the 1400s as a justification for Major. In what universe! Again, first you are wrong, maiour may have been the authors' attempt to get a Latin word close to Maior, NOT a word close to major. Second, since when is it the first use of a word that defines what one should use today. Even if it did, Rwflammang and Aunva6 would still be wrong. Their naming of the basilica is choosing a word arbritrarily because a few sites did so, but it goes against the grain of scholarship, common sense, vocabulary, history, the use by other encyclopedias, and the meaning of the word.

But it goes with the grain of history, which is the point of quoting the name from the 14th century poem. It's interesting that you think the poet was trying to "translate" the name, which seems to be your hobby horse. Again, you are projecting. Rwflammang (talk) 20:20, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Nothing gets people more riled up than people arguing with untruths. Enough is enough: I strongly urge that this be put to a vote or review. Rococo1700 (talk) 19:43, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

take a look at WP:NOTVOTE. I see consensus among everyone but you on this. people browsing the English wiki are pretty much going to want ENGLISH. besides, all the other major and i'm sure most of the minor, basilicas have ENGLISH titles. Aunva6 (talk) 20:15, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Oh, sure! See Category:Basilica churches in Rome. Your arguments are getting siller. Johnbod (talk) 20:32, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Rwflammang, I am not sure that the 15th century writer was trying to translate or use some personal form of Latin. He was and did not use the word major, Maior does not mean Major.

The Oxford English Dictionary disagrees with you on this. I found the cited source under the listing "Major". Rwflammang (talk) 23:54, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Aunva6, again you miss the point. If you want to call this the Major Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, you would not be redundant. Maggiore does not refer to Basilica; it refers to Mary, this is the church of Mary the Greatests or the Greatest of the icons of Mary. In the Catholic tradition, there are many forms of the adoration of Mary: Mary of the Passion, Mary of the Immaculate Conception, etc. For Rome, this was Maria Maggiore, not the Maggiore Basilica of Santa Maria. Again, I have no objections to changing San Lorenzo fuori delle mura to St Lawrence outside the walls; the connotation of both titles is equivalent. Santa Maria Maggiore is not Saint Mary Major. Of course you could try other combinations Saint Mary the Greatest and Saint Mary the Most Major but they do not have the same connotation and seem akward and forced translations.

1) You cannot argue that St Mary Major is most commonly used in English.

Sure I can. Mary Major is much more commonly used among anglophone Catholics, and I guarantee you that there are more anglophone Catholics talking about Mary Major every day than there are anglophone art historians talking about Maria Maggiore. Rwflammang (talk) 00:29, 4 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

2) You cannot argue that it is the most commonly used term in history or art history books or encyclopedias in English. In fact, it is rarely used independent of Santa Maria Maggiore, if used at all.

I'll concede you the art history books, but art history is too obscure a topic to trump the official name. Rwflammang (talk) 00:29, 4 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

3) While you can cite all the rules about translation you want; it is not right to rename it to some name that makes you feel good, but does not correspond to the original name either in Latin or in Italian. If not, why not call Jesus, Joe. What if I find you some authority that calls Jesus "your average Joe does that mean I can translate his name too. That is you can't argue that St Mary Major would be the acceptable English translation of Santa Maria Maggiore to a linguist. Rococo1700 (talk) 22:11, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

This last point is irrelevant, as I've said many times above. Why not call Jesus IHCOYS? Why not call Socrates COKPATHS? Why not call James JACOBUS? Names change across languages all the time; MARIA MAIOR is no exception. Rwflammang (talk) 00:29, 4 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

i'm posting this at the wp:DRN. Aunva6 (talk) 22:18, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
on second thought, an RfC seems more appropriate. Aunva6 (talk) 22:23, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
6th Debate ("RfC: should the article use the italian name, or english translation?")

should the article be called 'basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore' or is the current name more appropriate? Aunva6 (talk) 22:58, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Definitely keep the current name. WP:NAME and other policies and guidelines make it clear that the preferred title would be the name that is most commonly used in this language to refer to this topic, and on that basis it qualifies as preferable to any name in a foreign language which is less commonly used in English. Of course, in the wikipedias of other languages, other names would probably be preferable there. John Carter (talk) 23:05, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I agree with John Carter. I just do not find an adequate "other name" in English to replace this one. It is a problem particular to Santa Maria Maggiore, and does not apply to all other churches in Rome. One other exception I can think of is Sant'Agnese in Agone; that is, I do not think another name does justice to its own.Rococo1700 (talk) 23:12, 3 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

  • This should just be a standard WP:RM discussion. My views are clear from the above - plain Santa Maria Maggiore is best, or Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore. Johnbod (talk) 00:01, 4 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • English name please. Rwflammang (talk) 00:16, 4 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • English speakers in Rome do in fact use "Mary Major" when speaking English, not "Maria Maggiore". They would think it a little odd to say: "I'm going to Santa Maria Maggiore." Esoglou (talk) 08:38, 4 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
English speaking clergy no doubt, but the vastly greater number of resident laity and tourists will be using "Santa Maria Maggiore". Johnbod (talk) 13:36, 14 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • English name: As above, English speakers say "Mary Major"; Santa Maria Maggiore is for Italians. When in Rome, do as Romans do; when on Wikipedia, do as WP:NAME does. Whiteguru (talk) 20:42, 12 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I think we have a consensus that Mary Major is the proper name to be used. closing RfC. Aunva6 (talk) 20:58, 12 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hardly! We haven't had nearly enough comments, but an Rfc was always the wrong way to do this. The BBC is just now reporting that the new Pope is (of course) "in the church of Santa Maria Maggiore" just now. The extra media coverage around this will give a good opportunity to assess what the WP:COMMONNAME is, and we can do a proper WP:RM at some point afterwards. Johnbod (talk) 13:32, 14 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
well, I thought a couple weeks would be good enough, and it was quite a while since the last one. anyways. if sources call it sata maria magiorre, then I will be happy to run it through an RM, and change the name based on consensus. that's how wikipedia works after all. Aunva6 (talk) 14:30, 14 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I am also critical of the process Whiteguru's comments are not based on a fact. He states "English speakers say "Mary Major"; I challenge anyone to to a google search for Travel books and guides using Mary Major Travel versus those using Maria Maggiore Travel. By far, the term to refer to the Roman church, used by Fodors, Lets Go, DK guides, Lonely Planet, Mobile Reference, and others is Maria Maggiore, not Mary Major. Only Mobile Reference uses both terms.

For this reason and many other stated above:

  • The statement: English speakers in Rome do in fact use "Mary Major" when speaking English, not "Maria Maggiore". is false.
Nope. It's true. Rwflammang (talk) 00:45, 15 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • The statement: They would think it a little odd to say: "I'm going to Santa Maria Maggiore." is false.
Nope. It's true, as stated above by someone who knows. Rwflammang (talk) 00:45, 15 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • The statement by Whiteguru that implies that Maria Maggiore is the term used for Italians. When in Rome... is false. It is the term that is used by English speakers, wherever as the guides and texbooks indicate. I challenge Whiteguru to come up with evidence to the contrary. Wikipedia is supposed to house facts, not invented novel research. Whiteguru is making facts up in his conclusion.
Actually, Italians quite commonly refer to it by Maria Maggiore, because that's its Italian name. Rwflammang (talk) 00:45, 15 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Rococo1700 (talk) 13:53, 14 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

  • I am not opposed to a discussion, but let us base that on facts. Rococo1700 (talk) 13:53, 14 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
"St Mary Major" is the literal and pretty awkward and unidiomatic translation of the official Latin name, and used within the Catholic Church. But secular sources such as guide books and art historians nearly always use Santa Maria Maggiore in English for this major Roman landmark and monument. Johnbod (talk) 14:48, 14 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Official sources written in English almost always call it Saint Mary Major. Rwflammang (talk) 00:41, 15 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Meaning church sources, as I said. You seem in denial of the evident fact, repeatedly demonstrated above, that general media, tourist guidebooks and art history sources all nearly always use Santa Maria Maggiore in English, as in coverage of the Pope's visit yesterday. Johnbod (talk) 10:59, 15 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I know Wikipedia frowns on personal arguments, but I am troubled by this discussion, because I clearly provide evidence that Rwflammang is wrong and he persists. Rococo1700 (talk) 01:45, 16 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Per WP:BRD, this article should be moved back to Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore, where it has resided for several years. If people want to move it to another title, WP:RM is the correct process.

I could be persuaded that the WP:COMMONNAME is Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore or Santa Maria Maggiore instead (I'm not convinced the "Basilica" is essential and removing it also removes a debate over "of" or "di") but I have never seen the building called "Basilica of Saint Mary Major" outside church sources.

Church sources trump art history sources. It's a church first and a work of art second. Rwflammang (talk) 14:02, 16 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Most English-speaking visitors are essentially tourists not worshippers & will know it as Santa Maria Maggiore. That is the WP:COMMONNAME and there is no getting away from it. Johnbod (talk) 15:15, 16 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

We don't move Castel Sant'Angelo to Castle of the Holy Angel or Bocca della Verità to Mouth of Truth or Circus Maximus to Great Circle or Santa Maria in Cosmedin to Ornate Basilica of Saint Mary or Santa Maria in Aracoeli to Basilica of Saint Mary of the Altar of Heaven, do we: we try to find the name that is used most commonly in English-language sources, whether that name is translated in English or not. -- Ferma (talk) 19:28, 15 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I am worried that the process here has some deleterious qualities. Some news articles about the pope from a few days ago started using St Mary Major, but this may be influenced by the wikipedia entry itself, which comes up now as the second entry when you type Santa Maria Maggiore. Again, I do not think continents will rift or stars will fall from this name, but it seems that the process could have nefarious purposes. If Wikipedia can rewrite history by changing names, instead of recording history, then isn't it violating the dictum of "no new research". Again, the term St Mary Major is not a clean translation of Maria Maggiore; in fact, it has a derogatory sense to it. The notion that St Mary Major is a term mostly or commonly used by english speakers was not true, but may become true if Wikipedia has its way.
That's quite a stretch. As demonstrated above the name Mary Major is five centuries old and is the official name of the church in English. That is likely the source of the media's use of the name, not Wikipedia. Your point that Wikipedia should not change the name is well taken, and applies as much to Maria Maggiore as to Mary Major. As an English speaker, I can assure you that Mary Major is commonly used outside of the narrow field of art history. Rwflammang (talk) 14:02, 16 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Rwflammang quotes the use of "maiour" in the 1400s as a justification for Major. Again, you are wrong, maiour may have been the authors' attempt to get a word close to Latin Maior. The meaning of Maior does not equal major, despite the graphical similarities.
Take it up with Oxford English Dictionary. I never claimed anything about the "meaning" of major, about which I could not care less; I merely point out the indisputable fact that the proper name has a long pedigree. Rwflammang (talk) 00:39, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Rwflammang states I can assure you that Mary Major is commonly used outside of the narrow field of art history. Again, I cited above that the majority of modern travel books written in both Queen's English and US use in common circulation today cite Maggiore.
Rwflammang states the official name of the church in English is Mary Major. This is false. The first hit on Google using Maria Maggiore opens the following website [7]; which is the churches and the vatican's official site in English for The Papal Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, it is the english site with information, hours, and ways to arrange a visit to the Basilica, copyrighted by the Basilica Papale Santa Maria Maggiore, with a website at the Vatican. You can not get more official that that.
Point of order (recognizing this is a year old RfC) but first, the front page link title that link resides on [8] displays the English title. Second, EVERY reference to the basillica at question within the linked article uses the English name. THIRD, the ONLY time the Italian name is used in the English article is in the title at the top. The only other non-English title used is the Latin "Redemptoris Mater." My point? You guys got so wrapped around this, it's not even funny. Some of your arguments on both sides display a certain tonedeafness, it's downright comical. Speaking of bad English, whomever responsible for "ghit" should take a lesson in English orthography. "G-hit" maybe, but "ghit" looks like someone clearing their throat while trying to ward off a stray dog.Caisson 06 (talk) 04:37, 20 February 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]
A ghit is not evidence of an official name, obviously. Obviously, the names found in the official printed English editions of the Roman Missal and Liturgy of the Hours are official names. I'm so sorry that these don't show up as ghits. Rwflammang (talk) 00:39, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Rwflammang states: that the idea that Wikipedia will influence naming is a stretch. The second Google entry is now St Mary Major in Wikipedia, in major part due to Rwflammang. I challenge him to find a similar string of news reports prior to this change.
You flatter me with allegations of influence ;) but the recent string of news reports you have noticed has a much more plausible explanation. There are currently in Rome swarms of anglophone pilgrims and their anglophone clergy, as there are every year during Lent and Easter. The Station days this year for Mary Major will be or were Ember Wednesday (20 Feb), Spy Wednesday (March 27, coming soon), and Easter Sunday (March 31, ditto). In addition Pope Francis visited Mary Major on Thursday, 14 March. This year, the number of anglophone pilgrims may well be unusually large, go figure. There are also, this year, on account of the conclave and Pope Francis, a swarm of anglophone journalists, many of whom actually work for a living and conduct interviews, and who don't just look stuff up on Wikipedia. They have been talking to these anglophone pilgrims, the large majority of whom say "Mary Major" rather than "Maria Maggiore" in conversation. I also note an unusually large presence of Roman Catholic clergy on the major networks; most other years they would not be getting so much exposure during pilgrimage season. Behind the scenes too, I imagine there are an unusually large number of clergy consultants. Most of these guys also say "Mary Major". Now most of these people, with their conversations, prayers, liturgies, pilgrimages, and indulgences speak of "Mary Major", although very little of this would ever generate a ghit. This year, understandably, their linguistic habits are affecting (in a small way) journalism, either by rubbing off on the journalists, or via direct quotes. There is nothing surprising in any of this. Rwflammang (talk) 03:27, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Again Rwfmammang, the brief empty snippets of opinions are wearing thin, please back up your comments with data. This is getting annoying to argue with an empty suit.

Yeah, I know what you mean; your arguments haven't changed very much either. Rwflammang (talk) 03:27, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
So you've said many times, remaining deaf to many others who assure you the opposite. This is getting silly. I agree that Wikipedia may well influence media usage here as elsewhere. I also notice an Atlantic divide, bringing WP:ENGVAR into play. British English media are even less likely to use Saint Mary Major than American - most of their readers have probably been to Rome & will have heard of the church. Johnbod (talk) 15:15, 16 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I doubt that Wikipedia has influenced the media in this case; see my long rant above. But you are right that this is getting silly. I grow weary of the argument, but I do not concede the point. Rwflammang (talk) 03:27, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

FWIW Marilyn Stokstad's Art History, an American textbook of art history widely used in universities both in the US and elsewhere, refers to the building as the "Church of Santa Maria Maggiore (Saint Mary the Great)" the first time it is mentioned, then goes on to talk of the "Santa Maria Maggiore" and the "Church of Santa Maria Maggiore" the next couple of times it is mentioned. (I am looking at the 1st edition from 1995, in case that makes any difference). --Hegvald (talk) 10:53, 16 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Not sure if it counts due to past page histories but looking at the article links to the page the majority seem to be for either Santa Maria Maggiore or Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore. I deeply respect both Esoglu and John Carter on this sort of thing, but I've never heard St Mary Major used outside Wikipedia, although I realise that this is not much of an argument. JASpencer (talk) 10:03, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
7th Debate ("Disputing Rwflammang points on why Saint Mary Major is an inappropriate name")

I stated:

  • The statement: English speakers in Rome do in fact use "Mary Major" when speaking English, not "Maria Maggiore". is false.
Nope. It's true. Rwflammang (talk) 00:45, 15 March 2013 (UTC)
Nope,nope you're wrong. I win because I used two "nopes". Glad to see you bring silliness to argument.Rococo1700 (talk) 18:24, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The problem with Rwflammang is that I find that the majority of the Travel books in Google in English including (DK , Lonely Planet, Fodors, lets Go ) refer to the church as Maria Maggiore. The majority of the History text books in English refer to the church as Maria Maggiore. Again, just saying it is so, does not make it right. I say it is so and show evidence. I also disagree with you, but that would be descending to your level.

Official sources written in English almost always call it Saint Mary Major. Rwflammang (talk) 00:41, 15 March 2013

  • This is false, as I stated before the official website for the church is titled in English: The Papal Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore (

This takes precedence over some missal that you have; which I have no idea how it was derived.

Rwflammang states: Church sources trump art history sources. It's a church first and a work of art second.

  • I will agree with that. The vatican website, the church of Santa Maria Maggiore's own website in English uses Maria Maggiore, thereby, by Rwflmammang's own criteria, the name should be reverted to Santa Maria Maggiore.

Rwflammang states:

  • As demonstrated above the name Mary Major is five centuries old

Again I looked up you 4 century source and it calls the church Maiour which is likely a poor translation of the latin Maior. The problem is that Maior is not Major. I do not care what you say four centuries later. You cannot cite something without understanding it, and you do not seem to.

  • Rwflammang, you flatter me with your anglophone consultants and clergy and journalists, but you can not cite them in literature prior to your change in Wikipedia, except for some obscure missal. When you look at journal articles from now and years past, history articles from now and years past, news articles from years past, travel books from now and times past, when you look at this churches own website, its own site all of these from anglophone speakers, you see Maria Maggiore, all your claims about days and gobbledygook is gobbledygook, look at the evidence. To be accused of lacking evidence and inventing truth should not flatter anyone.

Again, my point was for you to argue with facts or argue against the facts we have put up. Whether you concede or not is irrelevant. I think this is comming to be a point of contention that needs to be debated by someone who is willing to look at the fact. For the reasons given above I find Mary Major a derogatory name in English, not befitting the term Maria Maggiore in meaning, significance, or matching it in common use in English. You are entitled to your whims, not to the facts.Rococo1700 (talk) 04:05, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

8th Debate ("Liberian Basilica")

Recent edits have obscured the fact that the current basilica is also sometimes called Liberian. I do not wish to deny that there are some who make a distinction between the present basilica and a hypothetical earlier one. But I do wish to point out that many do not. Rwflammang (talk) 01:14, 15 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It hasn't been the proper name for it since it was rebuilt and rededicted to Mary under Pope Sixtus III (reigned 432-440), but I see some guide books still give it as a secondary name, probably because they misunderstand their sources if you ask me. I think the present text is ok, certainly better than the previous one, which was misleading re this and other names. Compare "Constantinian basilica". Johnbod (talk) 10:54, 15 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Google Liberian basilica and you'll see it's still a name for it today, even in official sources. Rwflammang (talk) 02:11, 16 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Fair enough; I have made changes. Note that the Holy See's press office seems to think the "official name" is "Papal Liberian Basilica of St. Mary Major in Rome" in English [9]. By your logic elsewhere should we be renaming the article to that? Johnbod (talk) 15:06, 16 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Works for me. Rwflammang (talk) 00:22, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
And thanks for making the changes. Rwflammang (talk) 03:28, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

All, please see WP:RM. A formal RM is required when an undiscussed move has been disputed. In ictu oculi (talk) 07:28, 17 March 2013 (UTC) SourcesReply[reply]
Rwflammang, you are free to put in a RM, but please note WP:COMMONNAME can be, as in this case, an Italian name. "santa maria maggiore" -wikipedia = 40,000 English language GB hits since 1980. "saint mary major" -wikipedia = 2,100 since 1980 which makes an open-and-shut case for Santa Maria Maggiore. As for "Basilica of .." 11,000 versus for "Basilica of" only only 2,000 as Lonely Planet have Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore, so changing di for of is not required. In ictu oculi (talk) 07:14, 17 March2013 (UTC)

Read my comments about ghits above to see why they are not relevant to this discussion. In no discussion about Wikipedia do ghits make an open and shut case. Rwflammang (talk) 16:17, 18 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
9th Debate ("Request a Move [Basilica of Saint Mary Major to Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore]")
The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. Editors desiring to contest the closing decision should consider a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: no consensus for any move; restoring status quo ante as correctly noted by Johnbod. -- JHunterJ (talk) 17:32, 24 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Basilica of Saint Mary MajorBasilica of Santa Maria Maggiore – The arguments are extensive above. Some user is being arbitrary in his choice, even when confronted with multiple points of disagreement. I am not asking to change to a new name, I am asking to keep the name this basilica has had for over a thousand years. I am not certain what process was attempted before, but it seemed to ask for reasons, they were give, but then the user Rwflammang did it anyway without trying to contest the overwhelming evidence. Rococo1700 (talk) 04:15, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

No need for RM on procedural grounds: Per WP:RM this is a WP:BRD for a page which "has recently been moved without discussion,"[Note: changed own wording to more accurately cite WP:RM] and also evidently a controversial move judging by post move Talk page activity. In ictu oculi (talk) 07:25, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Comment I think a full RM discussions should be held, no need to move back while discussion is in progress. Consensus on the name in discussions above is not clear. However on the evidence above I support the move as it seems to be the most common in English language sources.--Salix (talk): 09:56, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I agree a proper RM is now best, but in case it should end in "No consensus" it should be remembered that Maria Maggiore is the effective status quo ante, and the article should then be returned to it. Johnbod (talk) 14:54, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Okay, then Support the restore of the original title Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore or Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore, noting that English sources seem to be 20:1 in favour of the Italian name ..Santa Maria Maggiore, per Britannica etc. And consistent with all the other churches at Santa Maria Maggiore (disambiguation). In ictu oculi (talk) 13:50, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Support per the lengthy discussions above. Imo the question boils down to a choice between the official translation used (with variations) by official Church websites, or the WP:COMMONNAME used in the great majority of general & news media, guidebooks, history and art history sources. Ideally I would prefer just Santa Maria Maggiore - most of Category:Basilica churches in Rome (78 of them) don't use "Basilica" in their name, and of course are not translated. The official English translation is at best clunky and odd, but of course will redirect here. Johnbod (talk) 14:50, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • If the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore is to be translated, let's translate Pont Neuf. Arguments for "consistency", looking deep within our American selves, are specious.--Wetman (talk) 15:31, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Oppose Johnbod has inserted in the article sourced information about the official titles. In the English Wikipedia, I think the title should be an English official title. Esoglou (talk) 18:17, 17 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Support. It doesn't matter what the "official" title is (even if we can confirm that either way – from the evidence posted, Church sources seem to be mixed in their use). Nor does it matter what it is claimed, anecdotally, that English people in Rome supposedly use. Nor does it matter what the literal or near-literal translation into English might be or whether it is found occasionally. WP article title policy is incredibly simple and clear: use the common name that is currently usually used in reputable and authoritative English sources (which – shock, horror – is not necessarily an "English" name but will sometimes be what is technically a foreign language term, eg, as noted, Pont Neuf, Circus Maximus). Here, that's pretty clearly some variation based on "Maria Maggiore", not "Mary Major". As ever, with some people closing their eyes to that basic principle, we have made something that should be incredibly simple ridiculously convoluted. N-HH talk/edits 00:11, 18 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Support move to Santa Maria Maggiore, which is the usual way of referring to it without the rather unpleasant mixing of languages (and already redirects here). By far the commonest name used in pretty much every academic work and guidebook. I doubt if many people who knew what they were talking about would even consider calling it St Mary Major. Should never have been moved in the first place. Contrary to the apparent beliefs of some editors, WP:USEENGLISH does not mean "translate into English even if that's not how it's commonly known anywhere". It means "use the form commonly used in English-language publications etc". That is Santa Maria Maggiore. -- Necrothesp (talk) 11:59, 18 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Oppose I recognize this is a lost cause because English scholars tend to have a sweet spot for Italian names (list of basilicas vs list of basilicas in Italy). I am not convinced by WP:COMMONNAME when it comes churches as it forces all the Cathedrals names to be a concatenation of the city where it is located and "Cathedral", hiding the dedication of the cathedral somewhere in the article. Is this OK? If you are writing a travel guide, it is mandatory. If you are writing an encyclopedia, I am not so sure. I tend to prefer accuracy over precision. Therefore, I prefer its English official name although I understand people who don't. Alberto Fernández Fernández (talk) 21:19, 19 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Support move to Santa Maria Maggiore, for my many reasons in the discussion above. One added point, my point on the lack of translation is not that it has to be, but that if we are to be generally arbitrary, and St Mary Major is that, then we ought to seek a name that is reflective of the title. If the church had a common English name, even if it were arbitrary, then I would favor that name. St Mary Major is not common use in English, by my examination of academic and non-academic sources in English, nor by the own church's english website. Rococo1700 (talk) 01:10, 20 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Support based on WP:COMMONNAME and WP:ENGLISH. "The most common name [not the most common English language name] for a subject, as determined by its prevalence in reliable English-language sources, is often used as a title because it is recognizable and natural." (WP:COMMONNAME) "The title of an article should generally use the version of the name of the subject which is most common in the English language [not the most common English language name], as you would find it in reliable sources ... This makes it easy to find, and easy to compare information with other sources." (WP:ENGLISH) The italics are mine. I also support Santa Maria Maggiore, which is also widely used in reliable sources. Bede735 (talk) 20:11, 20 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
reliable sources such as? -- Aunva6talk - contribs 17:18, 23 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Oppose. I know of three official documents in English mentioning this name:
    • The polyglot edition of the 1950 Enchiridion Indugentiarum, the official handbook of indulgences, which has a Versio Anglica authorized by the Vatican. The English version is called the Raccolta and was published by Benziger Brothers, Inc. in New York in 1957. "Saint Mary Major" is mentioned in the title of paragraph 777, and in the body of paragraph 779, which grant indulgences to pilgrims praying in this church.
    • The official translation of the Liturgy of the Hours. By official, I mean, "Approved by the episcopal conferences of the Antilles, Bangladesh, Burma, Canada, of the Pacific CEPAC (Fiji Islands, Rarotonga, Samoa and Tokelau, Tonga), Ghana, India, New Zealand, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea and the Solomons, the Philippines, Rhodesia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Uganda, and the United States of America for use in their dioceses, and confirmed by the Apostolic See." The name is used in Volume IV, in the proper of saints for August 5. An edition was published for Americans by the Catholic Book Publishing Company, New York, 1975. Editions published for the other countries mentioned probably used different publishers; any Catholic cleric in those countries could help you get your hands on one.
    • The official translation of the missal. I don't have a copy lying around, but you can find one in the vestry of every English speaking Roman Catholic church. Again, the name is used in the proper of saints for August 5, as well as for the Station days assigned to this church.
You may object that three official sources are not that many, but that is three more than the other side has. And frankly, none of the arguments offered by the other side hold any water. To wit:
    • 1. Ghits and WP:COMMONNAME, offered up by almost everyone who supports the move. The fatal flaw in this argument is that ghits are incapable of counting instances of the common name used in the liturgy or in the prayers or conversations of Pilgrims navigating their way through Rome. To say that ghit counting provides evidence that Maria Maggiore is more common than Mary Major is like saying that your metal detector provides evidence that there are more beer cans than squirrels in your forest, because it finds more hits for beer cans.
    • 2. Official Website says Maria Maggiore. Someone found an English website with a TLD of .va that says Maria Maggiore, and so it must be official. I could be wrong (if I am, please point out my error) but none of the websites saying Maria Maggiore had any sort of formal approval by the English speaking bishops' conferences.
    • 3. The bishops hired lousy translators. This argument is an exemplar of the genetic fallacy. If it were true, then it could be relevant to what the official name should be, but not what it is. As it stands, it is not relevant to this discussion.
    • 4. The translators used google translate. A strange variant of argument number 3, and invalid for the same reason, among others.
    • 5. Major does not mean what the dictionary says it does. This is another variant of the genetic fallacy, and is only one step removed from argument number 3, and is invalid for the same reason.
    • 6. "Mary Major" is not Italian, and lots of Italian churches have Italian names. The problem with this argument is that lots of Italian churches and places have English names too; the Pantheon, the Colosseum, St Peter's, St John Lateran, St Paul's outside the walls, Rome, Florence, Venice, etc., etc. This argument is refuted by common experience.
    • 7. The Mary Major title is having a deleterious effect on the rest of the internet. If true, then this argument works equally well the other way. The Maria Maggiore title would have a deleterious effect on the internet. This would just be another excellent reason not to trust ghits.
    • 8. Personal experience. JASpencer, above, has never heard this church called anything else but Maria Maggiore. This argument is actually much more valid than the ghits argument (see number 1, above) and is deserving of respect, but of course others' experiences are different and equally deserving of respect. My own experience is that among the tiny minority of English speakers who have ever even heard of this church, most have heard of it through the Liturgy and call it Mary Major.
    • 9. People who know what they are talking about don't call it Mary Major. Oddly enough, I have the opposite experience; people who call it Mary Major are more likely to understand this church's significance.
    • 10. You have been repeatedly corrected, but you still persist in your error. I don't find any of these "corrections" very relevant. See points 1 through 9 above.
I'm not going to respond to this rambling discourse in detail, but the nomination made it clear that "Mary Major" was the official church translation (though not always used), and "Maria Maggiore" used in other sources, such as the over 1700 google news links for Maria Maggiore for the Pope's visit last week. 3-7 are complete straw men. The current article does not make this at all clear, but Santa Maria Maggiore is a key monument for art history, being the only large Early Christian basilica to retain anything like its original internal appearance, with the only surviving cycles of Late Antique biblical narrative mosaics, which are the earliest large cycles in any form of art. Anyone doing "Art History 101" etc will come across it, as "Maria Maggiore" of course. It is a venerable church of course, but frankly has no unique global importance for Catholics, although the icon it houses has a local importance for Romans. Even to Anglophone Catholics it is better known as a monument, at least in Europe. It's not strictly an argument here, but note that the German, Dutch, Catalan etc WPs use Maria Maggiore, though the French, Spanish and Czechs use local translations. Johnbod (talk) 18:04, 23 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The biggest question is why we are spending any time at all trying to work out what the "official" name might be. Even if we could prove it conclusively, which seems unlikely anyway, it doesn't matter. COMMONNAME is the key point of policy. No, pure Google numbers are not conclusive but they're pretty overwhelming here, with no obvious catch, and no one is anyway simply relying on just numbers or on random websites; people have posted evidence as to what about 90-95% of the media, guide books and serious historical/cultural books etc, and even plenty of church and Vatican sites, happily call this place. And the idea that we should give any weight at all to what pseudonymous WP editors claim is most commonly used in liturgy and pilgrims' spoken conversations, or to "my own experience", is just bizarre – even if it was in our naming policy it is utterly impossible to verify or demonstrate. This is among the simpler naming questions I've seen, but as often, we have one or two editors holding out with irrelevant and convoluted debate and non-arguments. Here's a tip: you're wasting your own time as much as anyone else's. N-HH talk/edits 11:53, 24 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
google doesn't limit its search to just english stuff. you search an italian name, and it will come up with everything that has that word or words in it. ghits are not very reliable in this situation. -- Aunva6talk - contribs 14:05, 24 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I am not, as my post above made rather clear, relying simply on the numbers that bounce back or suggesting that to do so is good practice or, in itself, definitive. It is also fairly obvious on even a cursory glance at any Google search – especially in books – that not only is there a massive preponderance of "Maria Maggiore" but that it has nothing to do with Italian sources skewing the results (which would, of course, be an "obvious catch"). N-HH talk/edits 14:13, 24 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Support. the Italian name (Santa Maria Maggiore) appears to be the by far most common alternative in English-language publications. As I pointed out above, Stokstad uses it in her Art History, which is a widely used introductory textbook, and JSTOR gives far more hits for Santa Maria Maggiore than for St/Saint Mary Major --Hegvald (talk) 18:16, 23 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Support as common name. Srnec (talk) 21:33, 23 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Oppose as per Rwflammang above -- Aunva6talk - contribs 04:02, 24 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page or in a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.
10th Debate ("Official Church Sources")

I was pointed here by someone and read the talk page and did some searching. There seems to be a major misconception over what the Church itself calls this building. Exhibit A)

The large title text at the top of the page says "The Papal Basilica Santa Maria Maggiore" HOWEVER, if we keep reading the FIRST SENTENCE says "Situated on the summit of the Esquiline Hill, St. Mary Major is the only patriarchal basilica of the four in Rome to have retained its paleo-Christian structures." I would argue that the title at the top of the page is stylized, and that the "official church translation when used in writing is "St. Mary Major." The other possibility is that the title remains the same regardless of what language you view the page as. I confirmed this is wrong by going to en - fr - and it -

This tells us a couple things. First - the "it's not an accurate translation" camp is just plain wrong. Even if it were somehow inaccurate, Wikipedia is about venerability, and we can verify the Church itself calls it the "St. Mary Major" in English.

Exhibit b) The Vatican news agency calls it "St. Mary Major" in English.

I think using ghits to calculate something like this is misguided. I think saying "art history trumps the church" is wrong. I think one of the best ways we could solve this is for someone to drive to a brick and mortar bookstore and open a bunch of books. However even this may contradict the fact that the Vatican, their news agency, and all subsequent reprints of the story (FOX news call it "St. Mary Major"

Sooo the way I see it, there are three possibilities.

1) Santa Maria Maggiore Basilica

2) The Papal Basilica Santa Maria Maggiore

3) St. Mary Major Basilica

I think "Basilica di" and "Basilica of" are the wrong place to put this article.

I think because this is an ENGLISH encyclopedia, 3 is the best choice. It is the translation the Vatican uses, and the media when they republish the Vatican's stories. The important thing to remember is, no one will not be able to find this article because it gets moved. Google searches for "Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore" will still lead to this page. Given what I have read, a title that starts "Basilica di" is wrong because now the title is the Italian version and not the English one. The current state of this article title is like having "Italy" titled "Repubblica italiana".

However my argument falls a part a bit when we look at It seems most Basilica's are referred to by their Italian name. Is St. Peter's Basilica the odd man out? I think it might be time to standardize the names or agree to keep them all in their native language. Al, alle, a, di, dei, e, ei, etc should all probably be turned into their english preposition/article counterpart. Xkcdreader (talk) 05:45, 25 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

well, look at St. John Lateran's and St. Paul outside the walls... obviously engrish. saying that it has been used a certain way for a long time is not a valid argument. it's like saying we shouldn't edit articles because they have been some way for a long time. also, I recall that noone who supported the move EVER cited specific sources for the name. Rwflammang cited at least 3 specific sources. and, just because mopre articles are named some way does not mean it is correct. remember, wikipedia is not a source-- Aunva6talk - contribs 05:58, 25 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
?? I didnt say it should remain because it has been used that way for a long time. Nowhere in what I just wrote did I make an appeal to tradition. I am confused. I support "St. Mary Major Basilica" per sources like and I also explicitly said ghits are not a good measure. Quite often a page may be in english, written by a foreign speaker who uses their native words for proper nouns. ghits just make it more confusing. FURTHERMORE, ghits are a bad measure, because they favor what wikipedia calls the article. In that sense Wikipedia can CAUSE a common name to be common across the internet because they named the article that way. Xkcdreader (talk) 06:21, 25 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
wasn't talking about you Xkcdreader. -- Aunva6talk - contribs 13:47, 25 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
No one's using raw Google hits to justify the name, or being befuddled by the numbers generated by WP content (or Italian-language sites or whatever). Why do people keep claiming that they are? As noted, nor does it matter a) if "Maria Maggiore" is not English; b) what the "official" English-language name is, even if we could prove it one way or the other (which does not seem possible anyway); c) that some other churches happen to be known by their English name; or d) what one or two random cited sources happen to use. What matters is what the other 95% of serious sources use. Plus we've just had an RM on it. Please everyone, just save yourselves a lot of time and talkpage space and drop this one? N-HH talk/edits 10:42, 25 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
why? because no hard evidence was offered as to the commonname being Santa maria magiorre. however, there is specific evidence that points to St. Mary Major. -- Aunva6talk - contribs 13:59, 25 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
This party is over. Standardizing all Roman basilica names, or all church names, is the last thing we want to do. Most of the great major Roman basilicas do have English forms in English, & most minor ones don't. But each church should be taken individually. Johnbod (talk) 14:14, 25 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
the party is over, according to you, but I have yet to see specific evidence pointing to the name of this basilica being the italian one. I do agree, however, that basilicas and churches must be named on a case-by-case basis. -- Aunva6talk - contribs 17:14, 25 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The party is indeed over by any objective standard, as we have had an RM and it was closed with the result favouring Maria Maggiore. As for the evidence, a fairly detailed analysis of Google Books returns was posted at the top of this section. You can try a books search yourself. From where I am right now, that gives 33,000 for "Mary Major" and 551,000 for "Maria Maggiore". Now, as correctly noted, we can't just rely on those raw numbers, although the difference, prima facie, is fairly convincing. Some of the Maria Maggiore results are false positives, and some are in Italian. However, you only have to look at the leading Mary Major results to see that within that already smaller number, there are far more false positives, and right at the top of the returns – recipe books by "Mary Major", churches in England with that name etc. As for the books that do come up about this church, those using Maria Maggiore are mainly serious history and art books and noted guide books; the much smaller number that occasionally pop up in the Mary Major search mostly seem to be children's religious books. N-HH talk/edits 11:44, 26 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I think the ending was premature, and additionally, it ended NO CONSENSUS, not consensus in favor. as I have pointed out, google does NOT restrict its searches to english sources, so ghits are useless in this case. we have found a similar number of books that use saint mary major. and many, many of the books on google books for santa maria magiorre are in italian, we only consider english sources. -- Aunva6talk - contribs 13:49, 26 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Agreed, it ended do to No Consensus, not because the majority agreed one way. I don't see how the discussion is over. It really doesn't hurt to keep talking about it, and if it does bother you, you can always leave the discussion. Xkcdreader (talk) 14:57, 26 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You're not wrong. Anyway, fill your boots the pair of you. But a couple of final points: 1) the effect of the "no consensus" close was that there was no support for it to have been moved to Mary Major; 2) @Aunva specifically, I know we shouldn't just rely on raw Google numbers and I know some Google results come back in Italian. I have said as much several times now, including just above, so why do you keep repeating that as if I haven't got it or as if that general and uncontested observation – along with totally unexplained and unverified claims such as that there are a "similar number of books that use saint mary major" – refutes the actual, demonstrable, specific evidence in this case? N-HH talk/edits 23:16, 26 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
your right, I need to stop beating the ghits horse. and I also realize that the move was not on consensus, i'm not that dense. I was refering to specific book mentioned. I will have a look on jstor, see what I can see. -- Aunva6talk - contribs 00:21, 27 March 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
11th Debate ("Requested move 7 August 2018 [from Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore to Basilica of Saint Mary Major]")
The following is a closed discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. Editors desiring to contest the closing decision should consider a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: consensus to move the page to Santa Maria Maggiore at this time, per the discussion below. Dekimasuよ! 20:04, 14 August 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Basilica di Santa Maria MaggioreBasilica of Saint Mary Major – English per WP:CONSISTENCY with all the other major basilicas in Rome. Let's evaluate the name again (see above for last discussion five years ago). Chicbyaccident (talk) 20:03, 7 August 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

  • Oppose. Its common name is Santa Maria Maggiore, not St Mary Major, even in English-language sources. St Peter's and St John Lateran are both most commonly know by their English names, so that's fine. San Paolo fuori le Mura is frequently known by its Italian name, but I'm not sure which is more common. But this one is definitely predominantly referred to by its Italian name. Nothing has changed since I said that in the last discussion. -- Necrothesp (talk) 12:47, 8 August 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'd support that alternative: Santa Maria Maggiore as a second best. Chicbyaccident (talk) 17:13, 10 August 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  • Strong Oppose per above - most other Roman churches should be moved too. Johnbod (talk) 23:02, 8 August 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Support Santa Maria Maggiore per Necrothesp. This is better, although it might be argued "Rome" is needed for disam purposes - Santa Maria Maggiore (disambiguation) has several others. Far too many churchews include "Basilica" in the title, against the COMMONNAME. Johnbod (talk) 11:26, 13 August 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I'd agree with adding Rome, except that Santa Maria Maggiore already redirects here and has done for 14 years, which suggests there's no argument that it's the primary topic. -- Necrothesp (talk) 12:56, 13 August 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Yes, I wasn't really proposing adding it, especially as none of the others are at all well known, but it would be an acceptable fall-back if needed. Johnbod (talk) 13:45, 13 August 2018 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page or in a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

Yet another image[edit]


I noticed that the article mentions the sculpture of Pope Sixtus V; here's an image of that sculpture, if someone wants to try to incorporate it into the appropriate section. I didn't try because that section of the article is already pretty well filled with images. --Quuxplusone (talk) 10:40, 7 March 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Saint Cajetan holding the Holy Child, by Bernini[edit]

" Saint Cajetan holding the Holy Child, by Bernini " is in the list of major art works. Is it definitely correct? I was there today and couldn't find it despite asking the staff, including one of the museum curators who seemed to know everything about the church. He thinks this is a mistake. (talk) 18:41, 14 September 2012 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hello! This is to let editors know that the featured picture File:Dome of Cappella Paolina in Santa Maria Maggiore (Rome).jpg, which is used in this article, has been selected as the English Wikipedia's picture of the day (POTD) for August 25, 2020. A preview of the POTD is displayed below and can be edited at Template:POTD/2020-08-25. Any potential improvements or maintenance that could benefit the quality of this article should be made before its scheduled appearance on the Main Page. If you have any concerns, please place a message at Wikipedia talk:Picture of the day. Thank you! Cwmhiraeth (talk) 10:16, 11 August 2020 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Santa Maria Maggiore

Santa Maria Maggiore is a major basilica dedicated to the Virgin Mary and the largest Catholic Marian church in Rome. This picture shows the interior of the dome of the basilica's Pauline Chapel, frescoed by Italian painter Cigoli between 1610 and 1613. It depicts the Assumption, with Mary being lifted up towards heaven, while the apostles, some standing and others seated, look on. She holds a sceptre, and around her, the heavens open and choirs of angels rejoice as cherubs cavort. At the apex of the cupola, God the Father is represented crowned by seraphim. Built by order of Pope Paul V, the chapel houses the image of Salus Populi Romani, and is built of marble and richly gilded and frescoed throughout.

Painting credit: Cigoli; photographed by Livioandronico2013

A Commons file used on this page or its Wikidata item has been nominated for deletion[edit]

The following Wikimedia Commons file used on this page or its Wikidata item has been nominated for deletion:

Participate in the deletion discussion at the nomination page. —Community Tech bot (talk) 06:06, 18 February 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

This edit established the usage of the page as American English. Kindly maintain it consistently, pending a new consensus to the contrary. — LlywelynII 19:44, 17 August 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

General cleanup[edit]

I know everyone has been busy arguing about how they didn't know Maria Maggiore is the more common English name of this church and always has been. (Support move to Maria Maggiore when it inevitably comes up for discussion.)

That said, the current page is pretty much a disgrace and could use more focus on just having it make sense. The name section was called "Other appellations". Easy enough to fix, but it should also pull down most of the needless namegore out of the lead sentence. Further pull out all the random legendaria. It can go into a new Legend section or into the next part of History below the Roman bits, but very little of the 5 long paragraphs is actually about names. The history section was called 'History of the current church' despite there being no section on any earlier church. Easy enough to fix, but it should also discuss the site's Roman history and the modern excavations. It should also clarify exactly what is left from the 5th century building if Wikipedia is going along with considering this a 1500 year old Ship of Theseus. There are two separate "Papal basilica" sections that obviously need to be merged and moved out of the space before the History. There was needless fascist propaganda out of Zerocalcare that... well... it's still there but at least now it's slightly less racist and ordered correctly. The interior decoration sections randomly add and subtract = signs from their section titles. &c. &c. &c.  — LlywelynII 18:54, 17 August 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Roman history[edit]

As pointed out above, this church was raised at a prominent position in the city and incorporated earlier ruins, which have subsequently been excavated. Talk about them. Apparently there's an entire agricultural calendar under there. Even if you view that all as pagan nonsense, go ahead and include it (a) for the rest of us and (b) for the necessary NPOV for Wikipedia, in addition to (c) the satisfaction of the church being there and the pagans not. If people have added it over the years and it's been removed, kindly put it back and let admins know about people removing cited and relevant content that readers want to know about. — LlywelynII 18:54, 17 August 2023 (UTC)Reply[reply]