/ / Cathedral of Palermo: photo description (Cattedrale di Palermo)

Cathedral of Palermo: photo description (Cattedrale di Palermo)

Cathedral of Palermo, bearing the name of the assumption of the blessed virgin Mary is the main Church of the capital of Sicily, in which the relics of St. Rosalia, the patron Saint of the city. In addition, it is the center of the cult of this Saint, the 17th century and existing in Sicily. Because of its long history the Cathedral was rebuilt several times, today it is possible to notice features of the Arab-Norman and Gothic styles, as well as classicism. Inside are the tombs of the Sicilian kings and the German emperors, thanks to which the Kingdom of Sicily once prospered in the Mediterranean.

In the 4th century on the site of the present Cathedral was a Church dedicated to the Martyr Mamiliano. Then, in the early 7th century, there was built a Cathedral in honor of the blessed virgin Mary, which two centuries later the Arabs captured Palermo, was turned into a mosque.

In 1072 the Normans led by Robert Guiscard overthrew Arab rule in Sicily, and a mosque again became a Christian Church, the first Liturgy was held in the Greek rite. Already in the early 12th century, the Cathedral became the main Church of Norman Sicily - here was crowned Roger II, the first ruler of the Sicilian Kingdom. He is also buried inside the Cathedral. From the original Church building to have survived only the crypt and one of the columns of the southern portico with a quote from the Koran - they date back to 7-12 centuries.

In 1179-1186 years on the site of the old Cathedral was built a new, more majestic, which was supposed to compete in beauty with the Cathedral of Monreale. In 1250 it was attached to a graceful corner towers, and ten years later the vestry. The Eastern part of the Cathedral has preserved its Arab-Norman shape of a narrow Lancet window, false arches, numerous inlay, floral designs. In those years, the Basilica was a burial place for the emperors Henry VI and Frederick II and their spouses - their sarcophagi can be seen in one of the side chapels.

The construction of the Cathedral continued in the 14-16 centuries: they built the West portal in the Gothic style and the South portico with three pointed arches, and above the South portal was the icon of the virgin the work of Antonio Gambara. In the 15th century next to the Church was a garden, and inside the Cathedral was placed the statue of the virgin and child with the relics of St. Rosalia. The North portico was added in the first half of the 16th century by the famous architects Vincenzo and Fabio Ghajini. Vincenzo Gagini was also the author of a marble balustrade with statues of saints set in the square in front of the Cathedral. Finally, in 1685, at the Cathedral square was erected a fountain which was later crowned with the statue of St. Rosalia.

Serious reconstruction work under the guidance of Ferdinando Fuga was held in the Cathedral in the late 18th - early 19th centuries, with the result that it significantly changed its appearance. Appeared classic dome, 14 new chapel, the new North and South facades, which gave the Cathedral a classic look. The carved wooden ceiling was replaced by low arches, which has also given the Church a more discreet look.