The Cathedral in Cathedral Square is amazing. Just to look at the intricate carvings on the outside of the building will take time to absorb the beauty.
Inside, the Cathedral is beautiful and deserves your time to enjoy.
The heart of the Piazza del Duomo is the Duomo, the medieval cathedral, entitled to Santa Maria Assunta (St. Mary of the Assumption). This is a five-naved cathedral with a three-naved transept.
Construction was begun in 1064 by the architect Busketo, and set the model for the distinctive Pisan Romanesque style of architecture. The mosaics of the interior, as well as the pointed arches, show a strong Byzantine influence.
The façade, of grey marble and white stone set with discs of coloured marble, was built by a master named Rainaldo, as indicated by an inscription above the middle door: Rainaldus prudens operator.
From November to February 10:00-13:00/15.00-17.00; March 10:00-18:00 (until 13/3) 10:00-19:00 (until 20/3) 10:00-20:00 (from 21/3); from April to September 10:00-20:00; October 10:00-19:00
The entrance is allowed 30 minutes before closing time. On holidays the Cathedral opens at 13:00.
Mass hours: Weekdays 8:00, 9:30; Sunday 8:00, 9:30, 11:00
School groups: 1,00 euro
Entry is free from 1 November to 1 March
For further information:
Tel: +39 050 560547/561820
Fax: +39 050 560505
You can watch my 3 min 41 sec Video Pisa Dome out of my Youtube channel or here on VT.
%Would be almost funny if such an magnificent church has ordinary door. This massive main bronze door were made in the workshops of Giambologna, replacing the original doors destroyed in fire. The central door was in bronze and made by Bonanno Pisano while the other two were in wood. The bronze reliefs on the doors displaying the scenes from the Bible."
The cathedral has a five-naved plan with a three-naved transept. The interior is faced with black and white marble, frescoed dome and has a gilded ceiling carrying the coat of arms of the Medici. The magnificent carved pulpit was made by Nicolo's Pisano son Giovanni and it represents one of the masterworks of medieval sculpture.
The cathedral contains the bones of Saint Ranieri, the patron saint of Pisa and the tomb of the Holy Roman Emperor Henry VII, carved by Tino da Camaino. The tomb was disassembled and changed position many times during the years for political reasons.
The construction of magnificent Pisan Duomo was begun in 1063 by great local architect Buscheto, and consecrated in 1118 by Pope Gelasius II. After the death of its initiator, however, the construction suffered a set-back. The facade was built by architect Reinaldo, successor to Buscheto, and Master Guglielmo, who also sculpted the first pulpit in the Duomo.
It is possible to see the presence of many different styles in the architecture of the building like; Arab and Byzantine elements, classical and Lombard forms and cultural traditions of Tuscany, giving life to the one of the most original creations of Italian Romanesque style.
This is the amazing cathedral next to the leaning tower of Pisa. The interior is spectacular with frescoes and detailed architecture. Even the bronze doors are beautiful. Next to the cathedral is a smaller round Romanesque building. That is the Baptistery, dedicated to St. John, the Baptist. It is the largest baptistery in Italy. A "must see" if you are in Pisa.
Please see my travelogue for more photos of the church!
The Duomo may be hugely impressive, but do take the time to walk around its exterior.
Look carefully at its lower stones. You will not only see ancient inscriptions relating to those who are buried nearby, and some ancient graffiti, but also re-used Roman stonework, its inscriptions always inverted to show the dominance of the Christian church over 'pagan' Rome.
And check the high-up windows too, because there is some lovely and intricate marble mosaic-work to be seen.
Always look closely...you never know what you'll see !
See my 'small details' tip for the Tower as well.
The Cathedral was the 1st building here, planned by Buschetto di Giovanni and built almost a century before its Campanile.
It’s dedicated to the Virgin.
The Cathedral houses several masterpieces, including the mosaics of Christ with the Virgin and the Baptist, the work of Cimabue and Lapo, and the pulpit by Giovanni Pisano.
Inside, there used to be a huge bronze incense burner that helped Galileo formulate the theory of the movement of the pendulum.
When its construction began in 1064, the goal of its architects was that the new cathedral of Pisa should reflect the city's power and glory. At that time, Pisa was indeed one of the most powerful cities in Italy, and the treasures conquered by defeating other rival cities were either included in the design or provided the funds necessary to the construction of the new Romanesque-style cathedral. Covered in white and light grey marble, Pisa's duomo has been described as "a temple of snow-white marble". Its remarkable facade also shows a touch of Byzantine influence in its design.
Although some of the cathedral's original art work was destroyed in the 1595 fire, one of the elements that did survive is the beautiful mosaic fresco above the main altar, the work of Cimabue (he died in Pisa while working on the mosaic) and his students. The dome painted by Riminaldi with a scene depicting the ascension of the Virgin is also quite impressive. Giovanni Pisano's richly carved pulpit is another one of the cathedral's must-see features. And the good news is that if paying 15 Euros to go up the leaning tower sounds a bit excessive, at least there's a combined ticket available for 10 Euros that allows you to visit the cathedral, the baptistery, the cemetery and two museums - you definitely get your money's worth with that one!
Dedicated to Saint Mary of the Assumption, the Cathedral of Pisa is a masterpiece of Pisan Romanesque architecture. Construction began in 1064 by the architect known as Buscheto, to whom the signature Pisan style is attributed. In his design, he harmoniously combined a variety of styles, including Classical, Romanesque, Lombardian, Byzantine and most notably Arab/Islamic. Pisa had extensive commercial contacts and military battles with the Arabs, and each returning fleet brought back ideas, treasures and materials that played a prominent part in the construction of the magnificent cathedral. In fact, the gold treasure looted from the Arabs in Palermo, when Pisa triumphed in battle, financed the construction of this very lavish cathedral, while an Islamic bronze griffon sculpture crowned its eastern façade. Furthermore, Arab influences in the design are also seen in the geometric motifs in polychrome marble around the exterior of the cathedral and are also clearly evidenced in its interior (see next tip). In the 12th century, the architect Rainaldo extended the Cathedral's nave and added the existing façade, which echoes Byzantine influences. Other notable architects and sculptors continued to adorn the cathedral for the next centuries, particularly after 1595, when a fire destroyed parts of the interior.
For more photos of this architectural marvel, take a look at the travelogues: "la Cattedrale di Pisa" and "la Cattedrale di Pisa - Details."
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