Explore Religious Heritage Across Europe

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Basilica di San Pancrazio

Basilica di San Pancrazio

Roma, IT

The ancient basilica of San Pancrazio was built by order of Pope Symmachus (498-514) on the site where the 14-year-old martyr St. Pancras was buried. In the first half of the 7th century, during the pontificate of Pope Honorius I, the basilica was completely rebuilt so that the tomb of St. Pancras was located exactly under the high altar. The church gives access to catacombs which give an idea of the hardships of the Christians who came here to pray.

Basilica di San Paolo Maggiore

Basilica di San Paolo Maggiore

Bologna, IT

The Basilica of San Paolo Maggiore was commissioned between 1606 and 1611 by the Barnabites to the architect Ambrogio Magenta or Mazenta. The Barnabites named the church Maggiore to distinguish it from the other two churches dedicated to St. Paul in Bologna. During the Napoleonic invasion, the Barnabites were suppressed and the church became a parish in 1819. Subsequently closed, it was rededicated in 1878. In 1959 it was returned to the Barnabites and two years later Pope John XIII gave it the title of minor basilica.

Basilica di San Petronio

Basilica di San Petronio

Bologna, IT

The Basilica of San Petronio is a major church in Bologna, one of the largest brick Gothic buildings in the world. Although construction began in the late 14th century, the building, which was to be larger than St. Peter's Basilica, is largely unfinished since the 17th century.

Basilica di San Prospero

Basilica di San Prospero

Reggio Emilia, IT

The Basilica of San Prospero was built between 1514 and 1543 in the Emilian Baroque style. The façade dates from the mid-18th century and was designed by G.B. Cattani. To the right of the façade stands the incomplete octagonal bell tower, designed by Cristoforo Ricci and revised in the project by Giulio Romano (1499-1546). The lions were placed in their present position in 1748. Art historians favour the theory that these sculptures are in fact from an earlier period, probably Romanesque.

Basilica di San San Giacomo

Caltagirone, IT

On 25 July 1090, Count Roger the Norman, after defeating the Saracens in a favourable battle, entered Caltagirone in triumph and, in memory of his victory, erected a temple to St. James the Apostle, to whom he entrusted the protection of the town. Rebuilt several times due to strong earthquakes and also by the bombings of the last war, the Basilica of San Giacomo has an elegant baroque façade with a bronze door of contemporary art. At the end of the 19th century it was enriched with a bell tower decorated with four statues representing the four evangelists.

Basilica di San Siro

Basilica di San Siro

Genova, IT

The Basilica of San Siro, built in the 4th century, is one of the oldest churches in Genoa. It was originally named after the Twelve Apostles, but after the death of the canonised bishop Syrus of Pavia (4th century), it was given his name. San Siro was the cathedral of Genoa until the consecration of the cathedral of San Lorenzo (11th century). In 1006, the church was given to the Benedictine order and completely rebuilt. After a fire in 1580, it was restored from 1585 to 1619. With the exception of the façade, created by Carlo Barabino in 1821, it has retained this appearance ever since.

Basilica di San Vitale

Basilica di San Vitale

Ravenna, IT

A UNESCO world heritage site, the Basilica di San Vitale is one of the most important Byzantine structures in Europe. The church was built in 526 AD under the rule of the Ostrogoths and combines both Roman and Byzantine architecture. One of the more famous aspects of this church is its collection of mosaics, the most famous being the iconic mosaic of Emperor Justinian and his wife, Theodora.

Basilica di San Vitale

Basilica di San Vitale

Roma, IT

The early Christian basilica of San Vitale dates back to the 4th century and was originally dedicated to Saints Gervasius and Protasius. It was restored by Pope Leo III (795-816), then again in the Middle Ages and completely rebuilt by Popes Sixtus IV (1475) and Clement VIII (1595): the latter reduced the church to a single nave, instead of the original three, and led to the disappearance of the portico, which was closed off and reduced to a vestibule of the church. In 1859, Pius IX had the characteristic access staircase built, which is located below the church due to the rise in the street level following the construction of the Via Nazionale. The restoration work carried out in 1937-38 restored the original portico.

Basilica di Sant'Agostino in Campo Marzio

Basilica di Sant'Agostino in Campo Marzio

Roma, IT

The Basilica of Saints Tryphon and Augustine dates back to the 14th century, when the Augustinians, who were already officiating in the church of San Trifone in Posterula, decided to build a new structure for their convent and dedicate it to Saint Augustine. The church was built between the end of the 14th century and the beginning of the 15th century and completed around 1420. Too small and built too close to the Tiber, the church was rebuilt between 1479 and 1483. The façade, inspired by the church of Santa Maria Novella in Florence, has been attributed by some to Leon Battista Alberti and was built in 1483 by Jacopo da Pietrasanta.

Basilica di Sant'Agostino

Basilica di Sant'Agostino

Rieti, IT

The Basilica of Sant'Agostino was built ex-novo in the middle of the 13th century by the Augustinians, on land that had previously belonged to the Hermitine order. At that time, when Rieti was enjoying economic prosperity and the Pope frequently made the episcopal palace his seat, the churches of other mendicant orders were also built in the town: St. Francis and St. Dominic.

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What is Religiana?

Religiana, a project by Future for Religious Heritage, presents a catalogue of beatiful and inspiring buildings, helping you experience Europe's history, today!