The Sansevero Chapel, also known as Pietatella, was built in the 16th century as a votive chapel dedicated to Santa Maria della Pietà. In the 18th century, Prince Raimondo di Sangro of Sansevero remodelled it into a family funerary chapel, decorating it with exquisite sculptures: Giuseppe Sanmartino’s creepily lifelike Cristo Velato (Veiled Christ) is the centrepiece.
Prince Raimondo di Sangro, a student of science, an inventor, and an alchemist, achieved fame as a master of the occult, and the decoration of the chapel has contributed to his reputation.
The Crypt contains two anatomic models, which consist of two mummified bodies, whose cardiovascular systems are perfectly preserved after two centuries. Popular tradition has it that they are the result of Raimondo di Sangro’s experiments.