Cathedral of Assumption of Blessed Virgin Mary, Pula
Of the early Christian sacral objects, which abounded in Pula, the architecture of the cathedral of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary has been preserved to a considerable extent.
The present building is from the 5th century. It is large basilica with a nave and two aisles.
The church was originally decorated with mosaics on the floor, fragments of which have been preserved still today.
The cathedral undergone many reconstructions in the past, so different styles can be noticed on it; the arches separating the aisles are of Gothic style, while the columns and capitals still preserve some of the Romanesque mass. The high walls of the nave have kept the early Christian windows, but pointed Gothic windows were opened in the side walls. The side portal of the cathedral from 1457 is decorated with Renaissance reliefs.
The cathedral was given a new facade in 1712, at the time of bishop Bottari. It was built in the spirit of classicism.
The cathedral was erected on the foundations of a roman temple.
It oldest remains date from the 4th century.
It began as a single nave church but in the 5th century, it was divided into a three-nave basilica.
JUNE - SEPT
10am - 1pm 4pm - 8pm
SEPT - MAY
Until going there I only knew one cathedral with the tower separated from the main building - in Leiria.
Now, I knew a second one. And that was my most remarkable note about this monument, as usually built-destroyed-rebuilt, sharing stones with other, including the amphitheater.
Of the early Christian sacral objects, which abounded in Pula, the architecture of the cathedral of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary has been preserved to a considerable extent. The whole group of early Christian buildings was erected immediately within the city walls in the course of 4th and i 5th century. It grew at the site of an earlier classical building, perhaps public bath. It is probable that a secret Christian cultic space had existed there at the time when Christianity was a forbidden religion in the Rokan Empire.
The present building is from 5th century and It is a large basilica with a nave and two aisles, 50 meters long and 21 meters wide.
When visiting it, do not miss to see the remains of the original floor mosaics from 5th century.
The Cathedral of St. mary has a Renaissance façade, but this only masks the true age of the church. Behind the façade is a Romanesque interior that is itself a renovation of a sixth-century basilica. Not to be outdone, the basilica was originally built on the site of a Roman temple, in the time when the Christian church felt the need to erase pagan beliefs by converting temples of the old religion into those of the new. Perhaps the only thing of interest here is the altar made out of a third-century Roman sarcofogus, once alleged to contain the bones of Hungarian King Solomon.
The original structure was built on a previous site of a Roman temple, and was constructed in 5th-6th centuries as it gradually expanded. A major expansion took place in the 10th century when this was the major focus for residents. Most of the current structure that is seen today is from the 1712 and of Renaissance style. The bell tower and some of the church used stones from the arena. It was closed when we were there, and I suspect it is not open except for services. The bell tower also was closed.
A small chapel was added on the south side in the 13th century, which serves today as the vestry.
The freestanding bellfry was completed in 1707, and a lot of stones from the amphitheatre were used for its foundation.
A very early church of St. Thomas , built in the turn of the 4th and 5th century, was formerly in a small park along the south side of the cathedral, but it was demolished in 1657. The last remain of the building were visible as late as 1812. Fragments of the original marble septum, a vary fine work from the turn of above mentioned centuries, and early Romanesque capitals of later data are kept in the Archaeological Museum of Istira.
Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary's Birth decorated with six marble altars. One of them has St.Justin's relics brought here from Rome in 1664. Main altar and altarpiece with six figures of B.V.M., St.Pauline and Saints : Justin, Sergio, Julian, Tom and Jacob. The author is Natale Schiacione from Dalmatia, the much more valuable altarpiece by the altar of the Madonna of Carmel from the l7th century is believed to be done by the famous painter Jacopo Negriti, better known as Palma the Younger. Valentin Lukas, a young Labin painter from the 19th century; is the author of the painting featuring the Stages of the Cross.
The Cathedral of Pula was built at the site where Christians gathered already in the time of their persecution (until the 4th century).