Feature of this very large suite, on two levels, is the possibility, through a secret passage, to directly access the church. Agnese was martyred in the fourth century at the age of twelve, immediately becoming a symbol of purity, also because its name derives from the ancient Greek Agne, which means pure, caste. Exposed naked for her martyrdom under one of the arches of the Stadium of Domitian, which then stood in this area, according to legend was covered by her hair suddenly grown prodigiously to protect her purity as a child from indiscreet and lustful looks.
Constantly venerated in Rome, she was chosen by the Pamphilj as a family saint, so much so that Pope Innocent X dedicated the church to her, here in Piazza Navona, performed by Francesco Borromini. The simplicity of the saint creates a singular contrast with the architectural complexity and the splendor of the facade of the church of Sant'Agnese in Agone, the undisputed symbol of the baroque in Rome.