/ / The Church of Santa Sofia: photo description (Santa Sofia)

The Church of Santa Sofia: photo description (Santa Sofia)

Santa Sofia Church in Benevento in the Italian region Campania, one of the most well preserved examples of Lombard architecture. In 2011, the year she was included in the UNESCO world Cultural Heritage site by UNESCO in the nomination "the Lombards in Italy. Places of power (568-774 th.)".

The Church was founded by the Lombard ruler Archicom II approximately 760-m to year, evidenced by numerous documents, some of which is stored in the nearby Museum of the Samnites. It was built in the image of the Palatine Chapel in Pavia, and after the defeat of king Desiderius and the fall of the Lombard Kingdom in Northern Italy became the main Church of the Lombards, who found refuge in the Duchy of Benevento. Arechis II dedicated the temple of Hagia Sophia (Agia Sophia in Constantinople), and also built a women's Benedictine monastery, being in subjection to the Abbey of Montecassino and managed by his sister Harperhall.

Santa Sofia was seriously damaged during the earthquakes of 1688 and 1702-th years, when it was destroyed the original dome and some medieval elements. In the early 18th century by order of cardinal Orsini, future Pope Benedict XIII, the Church was renovated in the Baroque style. Work began in 1705, the year, changed the plan of the Church from star-shaped to round, then were added two side chapels, and changed the face of the apse, of the façade and antique columns. In the future, the frescoes that decorated the interior of the Santa Sophia, was almost completely destroyed - to have survived only a few fragments depicting scenes from the life of Christ and the virgin Mary. Fortunately, in 1957, the year on the basis of historical documents was performed another reconstruction, which returned the Church to its original appearance (with the exception of the Baroque façade with the Romanesque portal, which was left intact).

Today inside Santa Sofia, in the center, you can see six columns, perhaps taken from the ancient Temple of ISIS, who with the help of arches support the dome of the Church. From the works of art that adorn the Church, it is possible to allocate a bas-relief of the 13th century in the lunette of the portal and the frescoes of the 8-9 th centuries. The bell tower was built on the initiative of Abbot Gregory II - she collapsed in 1688, the year, and was rebuilt in 1703, the year in another place. Also noteworthy is the cloister of the 12th century, through which you can get to the Museum of the Samnites.