Humidity in the Cloister of the Ss. Quattro Coronati

edited by Leonardo Lombardi


The cloister of the Ss. Quattro Coronati shows, along the walls facing north, obvious traces of humidity going back up along the walls for few meters. The south portion of the cloister, although not dry, shows a less intense trace of humidity. On the exterior facade of the ecclesiastic complex, along via dei Querceti, the wall shows a large, triangular-shaped spot of humidity , with the vertex upward, located in correspondence of the tower, at the level of the floor of the cloister and of the rooms close to it .The investigation to clarify the causes of the humidity are in progress and has already been individuated , and partially examined, an old cistern collecting waste water from rain run off and from several sinks from washrooms located on the floor immediately above the cloister floor. As a matter of fact the cloister floor collects the rainfall run off of about 700 m2 of roof surface to which must be added the water directly falling on the cloister floor and the waste water coming from the washroom facilities previously mentioned. The water reaching the cloister floor level, and then the cistern, can be estimated at about 7-800,000 litres per year, those waters seem, following a mechanism still not completely clear, to find a way up along the walls to end towards the via dei Querceti side. In a general way there are two methods to resolve the problem of the humidity:

- To individuate the source and then eliminate it

- To air the foundations of the walls, and/or intervene on them to break the capillary fringe that, moving upward, allows the waters to reach the upper side of the walls.

It is still premature to indicate the solutions to be adopted in the project phase; most likely it will be necessary to intervene both ways, either reducing the influx reaching the cloister floor, by mean of diverting the flux towards a system able to canalise the waste water and rainfall run off, and directly intervening on the walls with techniques to be defined.




© 1999 Coordination Monica Morbidelli
© 1999 Altair 4 Multimedia
© 1999 All the material on this site is under the copyright of the Augustinian Community of
the Monastery of Ss. Quattro Coronati








Veduta del corridore sud del chiostro.

Fig. 1 - View of the south corridor of the cloister with the intonacos damaged as a result of rising damp; note the darker lines that indicate the presence of humidity in the wall, which goes well beyond the impost of the vault.