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Old April 24th, 2016, 10:49 PM   #1201
tommolo
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Now we're about to go to see the beautiful and full of light church of San Giorgio in Bernate Ticino, 29 kms west of the Duomo cathedral of Milan.
The architect of this chuch is Martino Bassi, who completed this church in late Renaissance style in the year 1582. The frescoes and the decoration have been made in the early XX century though. There is also an interesting palace beside of this church, the so-called "canonica", that is from the 1500s. On the inside of the canonica, you can see the beautiful cloister showed at the bottom of this post.

Here you are how I described this complex on this post (No.1133) on this same thread:

Quote:
Originally Posted by tommolo View Post
San Giorgio church and Canonica (rectory) of Bernate Ticino.
The story of the church and the rectory of Bernate begun in 1186,when the pope Urban III let the Augustian Friars to set in Bernate Ticino.
Today's mannerist church was begun in the year 1582, under the architect Martino Bassi. Under the church there is also a crypt that is almost 1000 years old! This is the most ancient part of the church, still in romanesque style, made with bricks. Beside of the church, there is the very important Renaissance building (from the 1500s) of the Canonica (the Rectory), also known as "Il Castello", the castle, because of its very monumental and solid palatial looking. The Canonica is also known as Palazzo Visconti...this building have just too many nicknames!
The facade:



(from Panoramio user antonio.aina)

The exteriors of the church of San Giorgio:



(Picture above taken from the webpage parcoticino.eguide.it)

My pictures of the exteriors, as published on the post No.1133 on this same thread:







And here you are my new pictures of the inside!





















The beautiful crypt, dating back to around year 1000:















The Campionese Masters basrelief that once ornated the portal of previous, romanesque church, a masterpiece of medieval art:



The main altar:









The Simone Peterzano's masterpiece, Peterzano was Caravaggio's teacher and master:





Behind the main altar, in the chorus, you can find a very big sized painting of Saint George fighting against the dragon:



Detail of this beautiful painting:







The amazing dome:



On the outside, you can find on the side of the church the ancient facade of the previous, romanesque church, that was rotated 90º, as you can see in this picture:



Detail of the facade still visible on the side of the church:



The most beautiful cloister, so delicate, elegant and filled with Renaissance atmosphere. The cloisters are inside of the "canonica" (or the fortified palace), beside the church.





Pure classy:



On the background, the bell tower and the dome:





Inside of the Canonica, in a room, you can find the sybol of the Pope Urban III, which "created" the Canonica of Bernate Ticino, directly under the control of the Pope:



All pictures are mine.
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Old April 25th, 2016, 11:59 PM   #1202
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really touching these examples of Romanesque, Gothic and mannerism.
I was also fascinated by examples of revival architecture: neoromanesque, neogothic, even an art deco church with style similar to Bramante that I really liked. Why the rise of revival occurred in Lombardy? Was it the product of lone geniuses or a theoretical school? It is coincided with a time of economic splendor?
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Old April 28th, 2016, 10:10 PM   #1203
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Hi Franciscoc! Thank you for your comments!

Yes, the late XIX century was a time of heavy industrialization and Milan lead the way to modernity back then. Italy unified in 1861 and Milan was the gateway to the rhenan Europe, and together with Turin (the gateway towards France and western europe) and Genoa (the portual city) composed the "Industrial triangle" that made of Italy a strong industrial country. Turin and Milan are now considered (along with Palermo in Sicily) the capital cities for the Liberty architectonical style in Italy, which is the italian version of the Modernismo, or the Art Nouveau/Jugendstil in the rest of Europe. I would surely say that Milan enjoyed a central position in the Industrialization of Europe in the late XIX-early XX century, and this led to a demographical explosion that changed Milan, bringing it from being a small-medium size city to the economical capital of Italy that still is today. This created a strong and powerful class of "new riches" and a wealthy bourgeoisie.

In the demographical-industrial explosions of the city of Milan and the small cities sourronding it, big capitals were destined to new monumental building, like town halls, schools, churches (of course), banks and also monumental industrial complexes, like the case of the utopical industrial village of Crespi d'Adda, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its value as an enlighted industrial, social and architectural site, really a unique place. Geniuses like Spirito Maria Chiappetta, but also Alessandro Antonelli or Luca Beltrami, enjoyed fresh economic capitals coming easily from a new bourgeois that needed social affirmation through monumental symbols, much like the Barcelona of Antoni Gaudi or the opening of the Gran Via and the Almudena cathedral in Madrid.

And now, here you are today's post, dedicated to a big medieval church in the city of Lodi, located 30 kms south-east of the Duomo cathedral of Milan.

The church of San Francesco in Lodi is one of the biggest in the city, built in gothic style (brick romanesque/gothic style to be precise) between the years 1280 and 1307. It has an uncomplete facade wich presents an innovative feature, the "open skies window", or a window opened directly to the sky, not opening on the inside, a purely decorative element with no practical function.



The typical "open skies window" (bifora a cielo aperto) on the facade, this was the first time it was used, and it will be copied in many churches of the Milanese area and then in all northern Italy, overall for lombardesque brick gothic style churches and cathedrals.



The beautifully frescoed interiors:









The counterfacade:





























































All the previous pictures are mine.

And now, a last one picture of the beautiful exteriors from Wikimedia Commons:

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Old April 30th, 2016, 01:31 AM   #1204
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WOW... beautyful
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Old May 3rd, 2016, 10:17 PM   #1205
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Thank you!

Let's keep on posting picture from the Ludesan district, that is the district of Lodi.
This is the San Bassiano basilica in Lodi vecchio, also called Basilica of the XII Apostles, or in latin "Basilica Apostolorum".

The very first church here, the Basilica Apostolorum, was built more than 1600 years ago, in the year 378 by the Bishop of the roman city of Laus Pompeia, that nowadays is Lodi Vecchio, located 25 kms southeast of the Duomo cathedral of Milan.
The basilica was then rebuilt in the XIV century in the typical Lombard Brick gothic style, preserving the romanesque apse with its frescoes.
The frescoes of the nave have been painted in the 1320s by the artist called the "Master of San Bassiano".

Approaching the Basilica in a very preserved beautiful rural/agricultural setting:







The beautiful side of the basilica with the strong gothic buttresses to maintain the wide vault:







The facade in front of you:



The typical "open sky" window:



Detail of the statue of San Bassiano in the facade:



And now, the interiors:









The counterfacade:



The beautifully frescoed vault:



The frescoes on the apse:



The Christus Pantocrator fresco on the apse, painted in an uncertain date between the year 900 and prior the year 1000, more than 1000 years old anyway (even if some scholar think that they have been painted in the rebuikding of the church in the XIV century):



Details of the beautiful high Medieval fresco:













The small apse of the right side nave:



A renaissance fresco of the Madonna:





Frescoes on the counterfacade:









The vault:



The original capitals from the romanesque building:







The basrelief done by the "Confraternita dei bovari" (confraternity of the cattlemen) that rebuilt the vault when it collapsed.



And this, the first fresco on the right in the picture below, is the so called "Volta dei Bovari" (or the "vault of the Cattlemen"), done by this rich confraternity (just as the previous basrelief) to celebrate the fact that they've rebuilt the fallen vault, this fresco (and the rebuilding of this part of the vault) have been done in the year 1323.
If you pay attention, you'll see painted cattlemen bringing tree trunks and logs for the rebuilding of the vault.



All pictures are mine.
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Old May 4th, 2016, 01:30 AM   #1206
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Thank You, beautiful reportage
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Old May 5th, 2016, 11:44 PM   #1207
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Than you Skymino!

With this last abbey we close the chapted dedicated to the medieval sacred architecture of Lodi and the surrounding area, in south east Milan.

This is the Abbazia dei Santi Pietro e Paolo, in Abbadia Cerreto, near Lodi, 36 kms sout east of the Duomo cathedral of Milan. The abbey, also known as the "Abbey of the Cerreto", presents the typical lombard brick romanesque style, like many many others abbey in the valley south of Milan. The Abbey of the Cerreto was founded by Alberic of Monte Cassino in the year 1084 and given to the Benedectine order, transforming swamp lands into a fertile area. In the year 1136 (or 1139), the Pope Innocent II gave the abbey to the monks of the Cistercian Order. The big church that we see today was built maybe between the year 1160 and 1170.

Let's start with the interesting outside!

Approaching the Abbey, the most typical way of doing so is by bike, fun and healthy, the typical transportation of the rural towns in the flat part of Lombardy:



The tall, octagonal tower on the transept tells us immediately that what we're seeing likely is some 1000 years old. The octagonal shape of the tower can easily be related to the previous Ottonian and Imperial (of the Sacred Roman Empire) architectures that dominated a couple of centuries before the building of the Abbey of the Cerreto. But the Ottonian feeling is still here!



Springs everywhere:





The facade has a strong early romanesque feeling to it:













The octagonal tower:



The right side:





The cistercian typical flat apse, with windows covered with alabaster glasses...magical the light on the inside!





The portico:



The portal and the wooden carved gate:





Follow with the inside on part II.

All pictures are mine.
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Old May 6th, 2016, 12:07 AM   #1208
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Abbazia di San Pietro in Abbadia Cerreto, Lodi, Part II.

The wooden carved gate. If we look carefully the door, we can find even the date of delivery: July the 27th of the year 1639.







The interiors, going inside:





The beautiful apse with the alabaster windows:



The wooden pulprit with the alabaster light on the background:







The counterfacade:





The frescoes on the side of the main nave:









The beautiful golden light of the apse, given by the alabaster windows:







Detail of the alabaster windows:



The pulprit:



The counterfacade:



Fresco on the counterfacade with the dedication to Benedectine order:







The transept:



And here you are the artistical masterpiece of the Abbey of the Cerreto, the so called "pala Cesi" at the center of the triptych, painted around the year 1540 by the painter Callisto Piazza, one of the most talented follower of -none less than- the Tiziano, the Master of the colour of the Renaissance!





A very baroque side chapel:









A curious element: a canoe found near the land, dating back from late roman era or high middle ages (IV to XI century). These lands, now extremely fertiles, once were swamps to be crossed with canoes or small boats.



All pictures are mine.
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Old May 9th, 2016, 01:40 AM   #1209
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What about a short trip to Tuscany?
No, don't worry, we're not crossing the borders of Lombardy, we'll go very close to Milan, to a tuscan island in the heart of northern Italy called Castiglione Olona, some 40 kms northwest of the Duomo cathedral of Milan. This is the Collegiata church, it has some really amazing tuscan early Renaissance fresco painted by one of the biggest name of western art: Masolino da Panicale, one of the creators of the Renaissance and the sfumato! Incredible isn't it? This greatest artist was called in Lombardy from the powerful Cardinal Branda, the right arm of the Pope Martin V, coming from the rich Colonna house, one of the most important noble families in Rome, back then as they are now.
The church, built in the most typical milanese and lombard brick gothic style has been built between the year 1422-1425 by the will of the cardinal Branda, and was decorated in the year 1435, at the very beginning of the Renaissance, by Masolino da Panicale, called from Tuscany to decorate this collegiata church.

Let's go to Castiglione Olona!

The amazing natural scenery:









The typical lombard brick gothic facade, it seems it has been designed by one of the architects of the Solari family:



Let's go inside to see Masolino da Panicale's works on the apse! We're in the 1435,these frescoes are sooo ahead of their times!



















The neogothic frescoed apse, not ancient, it has been painted in the XIX century:





The retablo on the side apse:









Another retablo on the other side apse:

















All pictures are mine.

It continues with the part II dedicated to the Baptistry.
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Old May 9th, 2016, 02:18 AM   #1210
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Collegiata di Castiglione Olona part II, the most amazing early Renaissance frescoes of Masolino da Panicale in the baptistry, painted in the year 1435.

Being a baptistry, the story told here is about the life of Saint John the Baptist and his relation with Herodias and the roman cout of Galilee at the time of Jesus.

We remind you that Masolino da Panicale, the artist that worked in this absolute masterpiece, has a preminent role in the creation and the development of Renaissance art. His most important masterpiece, present in every kind of Art History book worldwide as an highlight of Western Art, was the Brancacci chapel in Florence, at the Santa Maria del Carmine church in Oltrarno, a chapel that he frescoed together with another genius of early Renaissance, Masaccio, between the years 1424 and 1428, therefore 11 years before before coming to work at the decoration of the Collegiata church of Castiglione Olona.































Look at the scared expression of the small girl seeing the cut head! Sooo disgusted and frightened! So realistical! In the year 1435! Masolino was an absolute genius!



The lost sight of Salome offering the head of St. John the Baptist to her mother Herodias:



























The map of the city of Rome, if you pay attention you can see the Pantheon and the Trajan Column:





...And we've finished our trip! We go out of the a-ma-zing Collegiata church of Castiglione Olona, near Varese, some 40 kms north west of Milan.



All pictures are mine.
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Old May 9th, 2016, 10:06 PM   #1211
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wow, what a fabulous church and what a fabulous baptistery, is pure renaissance, pure modernity, with those expressions, those dresses, that perspective...
Fantastic proliferation of chapels painted in Lombardy, from different periods and styles, we are seeing page after page
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Old May 9th, 2016, 10:19 PM   #1212
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the Colonna family was one of the great roman noble houses, like the Farnese family (originating in Parma and with an important role in european politics of the modern age)
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Old May 10th, 2016, 03:31 AM   #1213
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Yes indeed they were! Just look at their palace in Rome to have an indication of how whealthy and powerful they were!
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Old May 10th, 2016, 07:52 PM   #1214
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Lovely photos
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Old May 13th, 2016, 10:55 PM   #1215
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Thank you Hotwheels!

Today we go to the most ancient basilica of Santi Pietro e Paolo of Agliate, near Carate Brianza, very close to Monza, located just 25 kilometers north of the
Duomo cathedral of Milan.

The tradition wants this basilica to be built in the IX century during the Carolingian rule by the then Archbishop of Milan, Anspertus.
Now scholars says that it has been built in the first half of XI century, or at the very ending of the X century. What is clear beyond any doubt is that
this basilica is 1000 years old and is a huge example of late Octonian architecture, or pre-romanesque. Just compare this basilica, for instance,
with the plan of the first Sant'Ambrogio basilica or also with the paleo-christian church of San Vincenzo in Prato in Milan. The flat side walls of the
main naves with high and small windows may racall also many paleo-christian architectures and churches in Rome (see Santa Maria in Cosmedin,
San Giorgio in Velabro, San Giovanni a Porta Latina or San Saba).

The columns and the capitals are thought to be spoil material from the late roman era.

The exteriors (of course under restoration):





This is the plan of the church:



Going inside you see this:









Just look at the capitals and the columns, bend and broken by the weight of times and centuries:























A fresco on the apse:



The typical romanesque Christus Pantocrator:





The right side nave little apse:

















A late roman era column with an inscription:





Another late roman era column with an inscription:











The upper church as seen from the crypt:



The crypt. If you pay attention, the capitals of the crypt seems to draw inspiration from the corintian capitals often used in roman temples.
Did they knew it from some ancient temple that at the time were still somewhat intact?











The elevated apse:





Ancient epigraphs:



Going outside, the baptistry (sorry for the restoration works undergoing):









The baptistry has been built probably at the same time of the church, and it has also a little apse, as you can clearly see here:











All pictures are mine.

And now some pictures of the exteriors taken from the Internet to show you how the Agliate basilica looks lke without all the scaffoldings of the restoration.

The facade:



The apse:



The interior of the baptistry:



(images taken from Wikimedia Commons)

And a huge picture of the comples of the church, the bell tower and the Baptistry:



(image taken from the website www.comuni-italiani.it)
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Old May 16th, 2016, 12:31 AM   #1216
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Today I want ot talk to you about a really important (and almost unknown) jewel, the Santa Maria Maggiore basilica in Lomello, 49 kilometers south-southwest of the Duomo cathedral of Milan (even if it will seems you much longer if you go by car...it's sooo isolated, tranquil and rural there!)

According the art historian A.K. Porter (1883-1933), in this church of Lomello, built between 1025 and 1040, you can find in the side naves the very first structural crossed vault ceilings in the whole Western art history. The structural crossed vault ceiling are a main feature in the Romanesque style, and the fact that here you can find here the very first example of them, arguably makes of the Santa Maria Maggiore church in Lomello a milestone and an exact border between what is pre-Romanesque and what is Romanesque. There is a theory that the architects of this church may be the famous "Maestri Comacini", and I personally second that hypotesis: only some genius may have invented such a brilliant feature like the vault that we can still see here.

The church is very asymmetric, and that led to many, many legends. One says that the devil itself wanted to destroy the church, but when he destroyed it, he repented after his fool act, and rebuilt it in a night. In a hurry, because dawn was coming, he rebuilt the church crooked and asymmetric.

The other legend, more fascinating to me, it says that the architect-monk in chief of the building may have imitated the body of Christ on the Cross, with his head reclined on the right while dying, like it actually does the apse of this church. It actually made my day when I heard, such a brilliant explaination!

Well, the church has been damaged and destroyed many times since the year 1040, but, according Porter, the side naves crossed vault ceilings have been rebuilt in the 1300s exactly as they were in the first place, making them the missing link between the very last pre-romanesque church of Saint Micheal church in Hildesheim, Germany, of the year 1031, and the very first fully legit Romanesque church of Sant'Ambrogio in Milan, of the year 1088.

If the hypotesis of A.K. Porter is true, and I think it is, this church, built in the year 1040, 9 years after Saint Micheal in Hildesheim and 48 years before Sant'Ambrogio in Milan, would clearly deserve the UNESCO World Heritage site recognition.

Approaching the basilica, the first thing you notice is the impressive baptistry of St. John, that we'll see later:







The (very irregular and asymmetric) interiors:





Look at the side nave in the following picture. This is the reason for which this church has been very studied by art history scholars, historians and architects: these are the oldest known structural crossed vault ceilings, dating back to 1025-1040. No other church in the world can presume to have this particular kind of vault as old as the one in Santa Maria Maggiore church in Lomello. In 1088, some 48 (fourty eight!) years later, you'll find this solution of the structural crossed vault ceiling applied also in the main nave in the masterpiece (and in a sente the "Manifesto" itself) of the so-called First Romanesque Style, also called Lombard Romanesque:





We get used to associate the idea of the crossed vault ceiling to the interior of the churches, isn't it? Well, if you see the high medieval or paleo-cristian churches you'll find no crossed vault whatsoever. It all started after year 1000, and this is the oldest known example:



If you ask me, this is the perfect candidate for a UNESCO world heritage site, maybe under the name "Magistri Comacini: the routes of the First Romanesque style from Lombardy to Europe", of course including the Sant'Ambrogio Basilica in Milan, Sant'Abbondio in Como and so on...







The apsis:



The counter facade:



The side walls of the main nave, just so pre-romanesque:



On the side nave on the right, the new Romanesque style, on the main nave at the center of the image, still the pre-romanesque style:



The lightining scheme of the interior still is somewhat related to high Middle Ages and paleochristian architecture:





The apse:



The full view of the interiors, as you can see, the building is heavy asymmetrical:



Some details of the very first known structural crossed vault ceiling in the Western art history:















The evidently asymmetric interior of the church:



End of part I, the post will follow on part II.

All pictures are mine.
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Old May 16th, 2016, 12:47 AM   #1217
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You always make me discover wonders that I do not know ... ora i forgot
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Old May 16th, 2016, 12:55 AM   #1218
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Santa Maria Maggiore church in Lomello, part II: the Baptistry, dedicated to Saint John, considered one of the highest Longobard (or paleochristian) architectural achievement, built between V century (still paleochristian era) and VII century (Longobard era). It is clearly shaped after many Lombardy eight-sides shaped baptistry, like to tell you just one example the Sant'Aquilino chapel in San Lorenzo Maggiore in Milan. It is also quite similar to the Galla Placidia mausoleum or better the Arian Baptistry in Ravenna:



The simple yet fascinating ancient 1500 years old interiors of the Baptistry:



Traces of frescoes:





Ok, this looks really like Sant'Aquilino chapel in Milan, same sequences of semi-apse and arcosoils:





Other traces of frescoes on another radial chapel:



The amazing exteriors:







As we leave the Santa Maria Maggiore church, we reamain struck in awe seeing the archeological remainings of the ancient facade and the first part of the nave: at the beginning the church was three spans longer, but it was shortened. The rest remained uncovered:





This is the "facade" that stands before the nowadays church, but it is clearly just an arch like many that stands on the interiors, just covered with a wall:



And this is the remaining part of the original facade:



The taller bell tower is clearly a late adding:













Here it is clearly visible the ancient facade and the modern church, separated by three roofless spans:





If you pay attention, you can see the late roman era typical kind of masonry called "Opus Spicata". How old can be this part of the wall? I have no clue about that...



Another hint that the church may actually be older than what it is currently thought: this apse exterior is extremely similar (identical?) to the San Nazaro in Brolo basilica in Milan, built in paleochristian style in the IV century.





Romanesque arches everywhere, a primitive version of the typical romanesque "lombard band" is visible in the upper part of the walls.

All pictures are mine.
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Old May 16th, 2016, 01:35 AM   #1219
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skymino View Post
You always make me discover wonders that I do not know ... ora i forgot
Hahah! Thank you my friend!
Go there, it's open on Saturday and Sunday between 3-6 p.m.
Strongly recommended if you're looking for a really quiet place and an excellent, fat risotto!

To conclude the discussion about the Santa Maria Maggiore basilica in Lomello, here you are a picture of the plan of the church.
It's quite striking the lack of regularity, orientation and symmetry:



And here you are the also the (hypotetical) reconstruction of what it shoud have looked like the basilica with the original facade and the first part of the naves:



Quite impressive, huh?

(Pictures taken from Flickr user Gabrivecchio)
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Last edited by tommolo; May 16th, 2016 at 04:19 AM.
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Old May 17th, 2016, 11:21 PM   #1220
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The baptistery has the spirit of Ravenna, is an example of how classicism survives in Italy in the dark times of the Middle Ages.
In the basilica of Santi Pietro e Paolo of Agliate is curious detail of the two-color arches, reminds me Broletto Nuovo or Sant'Ambrogio.
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