/ / Basilica of San Paolo Fuori Le Mura: photos, description (Basilica di San Paolo fuori le Mura)

Basilica of San Paolo Fuori Le Mura: photos, description (Basilica di San Paolo fuori le Mura)

The Basilica, built by Constantine the Great on the site of the tomb of the Apostle Paul, stood until 1823, when it was severely damaged by fire. And only in 1854 it was re-consecrated. Of the few surviving fragments of the burned-out Basilica should be allocated to the cloister (patio) (mid XIII century) with coloured inlaid double columns.

Currently, the majestic facade of the Basilica is preceded by a square portico, supported by 146 columns. In the center space, surrounded by a portico, stands a statue of the Apostle Paul, the work of Pietro Canonica. Part of the façade, located above the portico, richly decorated with mosaics, including a tympanum on which are the composition of "Christ blessing the Saints Peter and Paul." Below, the frieze depicted the story called "Agnus Dei" - "lamb of God, who is lying on the hill between the two Holy cities of Jerusalem and Bethlehem." Below - the four huge figures of Prophets framing the window.

The ornate interior of the Basilica has five naves. The Central nave is separated from the side eighty granite columns. Long ribbon frieze with portraits of the popes 236 runs along the nave and transept. Above the frieze of the Corinthian pilasters of the walls in a rhythmic manner interspersed with huge Windows instead of the old stained glass broken during the explosion in 1893. Coffered ceiling is decorated with gilded panels. Among the relics stored in the Basilica is the work of the tabernacle of Arnolfo di Cambio, completed in 1285, together with Pietro Cavallini. Beneath the beautiful canopy of tabernacle is the altar, which rises above the tomb of St. Paul traditional confessional window through which is visible the epitaph carved on the stone: "Paolo Apostolo Mart." ("Paul Apostle Martyr") relating to the IV century.