Treasures of the Church- Holy Sites

Cathedral of milan

An exceptionally large and elaborate Gothic cathedral is located on the main square of Milan. The Milan Cathedral, or the Duomo di Milano, is the Cathedral Church of Milan, located in northern Italy. It is described as one of the greatest Churches in the world, and one of the most famous buildings in Europe. The street plan of Milan, with streets either radiating from the Duomo or circling it, indicates that the Duomo occupied the most important site in the ancient Roman city. It is the largest Gothic cathedral, and the second largest Catholic cathedral in the world, second only to the Sevilleis Cathedral.

Construction began on the building in 1386, and wasn’t fully completed until 1965. The huge building is of brick construction, faced with marble. The style of the Cathedral began as Gothic, but then as the years passed it became more Renaissance in style. The Cathedral has a capacity of 40,000 and its dome height measures 65.5 meters. The roof is renowned for the forest of openwork pinnacles and spires, sitting upon delicate flying buttresses. By 1402, almost half of the cathedral was complete, but work was halted due to both lack of money and ideas. In 1805, Napolean Bonaparte did a lot to finance the construction of the building, and much was accomplished. For example, many of the missing arches and spires were constructed. More of the statues were also finished. In the years between 1829-1858 new stained glass windows replaced the old ones. The main spire is topped with a polychrome statue of the Madonna, to whom it has always been dedicated. The completion of the last details of the cathedral were only finished recently, in 1965. This date is considered the very end of a process which had proceeded for generations.

The interior of the Cathedral has a great number of monuments and artworks. A small red bulb in the dome above the apse marks the spot where the nails from the crucifixion of Christ has been placed. The windows of the apse portray St. John the Evangelist, by Cristoforo de' Mottis, and Saint Eligius and San John of Damascus, both by Niccolò da Varallo. The great windows of the choir are reputed to be the largest in the world. There are three magnificent altars by Pellegrino Pellegrini, which include the notable Federico Zuccari’s Visit of St. Peter to St. Agatha jailed. One may also walk high on the roofs of the huge Gothic cathedral. In the crypt is the tomb of Cardinal Borromeo, as well as Pope Martin V (1424). There is also the sixteenth century marble tomb of Giacomo de Medici. Additionally, in the crypt is the Cathedral Treasury. It also houses the Museo d'Arte Contomporanea of many artworks.

Back to the Main Page on Treasures of the Church

siervas_logo_color.jpg (14049 bytes)
Return to main page
This page is the work of the Servants of the Pierced Hearts of Jesus and Mary
Copyright © 2006- SCTJM