Acerenza Cathedral, Acerenza

#6 of 87 in Historic Sites in Province of Potenza
Must see · Church · Tourist Spot
Acerenza Cathedral (Italian: Duomo di Acerenza, Cattedrale di Santa Maria Assunta e San Canio) is a Roman Catholic cathedral dedicated to the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary and to Saint Canius in the town of Acerenza, in the province of Potenza and the region of Basilicata, Italy. It is the seat of the Archbishop of Acerenza.

The cathedral is one of the most notable Romanesque structures in this part of Italy.

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  • Stop at the information office and they will take you around. The people here are extraordinarily nice.  more »
  • Very nice and old church worth visiting. The diocesan museum has a wealth of church records for researcing ancestors in the town!!  more »
  • This place is amazing on the inside set in the heart of a very quiet town!
  • The current historical center of Acerenza, on the north side of the valley of the River Bradano, is located on Roman roads such as the Appia and the Herculea, which reached respectively Puglia and Calabria corresponds an indigenous center known in age Pre-Roman (VI century B.C.) and Roman. The pre-Roman artefacts consist of bronzes (lees fragments with a pearled edge) and local geometric vases and Greek colonial import vases. In the nearby Contrada called La Guardia, there were traces of dwellings and tombs of the FOURTH century B.C., but the name dates back to the Lombard period. Great Roman Center and then diocese almost certainly early medieval, Acerenza had an episcopio that assumed in 1059 under Pope Nicholas II (1059-1061) The title of ecclesiastical Metropolis. Immediately after the Norman Conquest begins the great history of the city, when the metropolitan Archbishop Arnaldo, inspired by the architecture of the Benedictine monastery of Cluny, of which he had been abbot, continued the construction work of the new cathedral, with the Direction of French architects and the financing of Roberto Guiscard. In 1080 the new cathedral was consecrated, dedicated to Santa Maria Assunta and San Canio. The cathedral has a Latin cross plan with three aisles divided by rectangular pillars that form five spans that end with a presbytery accompanied by ambulatory and radial chapels typical of Franco-Norman architecture. Certainly the building, which shows evident signs of reconstruction due to different earthquakes, shows several signs of a previous plant, as some balusters walled in the outer walls of the radial apses of the ambulatory, belonged to the Cibus of the church Lombard. At the centre of the façade, in the area between the small elevated porch and the rose window, is the bas-relief of the Basiliscus, the ancient emblem of Acerenza; On the right is the square-plan bell tower with a light shoe of the XV century and reliefs of reuse of the Roman and early Christian age. Even inside the building there are several fragments attributable to an earlier period, such as a large monolithic basin in porphyry, columns and capitals that some say come from pagan buildings, but more probably from the early Christian Church and Early Medieval. The radial chapels, that is the niches that revolve around the choir, they are dedicated to several saints, such as "San Michele Arcangelo", "San Mariano" and "San Canio" (in which a "Madonna enthroned with Child", "St. Francis with St. Jerome", "Saint Peter" and A pontiff). Nearby there is also the entrance to the crypt, rich of frescoes and baroque altars, embellished by several arcades, example of the different Catafalchi and sepulchres that have been realized and destroyed during the last centuries. But the cathedral is not the only building that can be visited in the city. We also find the convent of S. Antonio da Padova, formerly dedicated to St. Mary Magdalene. The building was built around the end of the SIXTEENTH century by the observant Alcantarini and is presented with a central cloister which connects the church with Baroque altars. Together with these monuments remember the numerous noble palaces, rich of portals finely carved, dating from the SIXTEENTH century onwards, that are joined to simple single-family dwellings, many fate around the NINETEENTH century according to a typology Typical architectural of Acerenza, as is the case of the former seminary building.
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