Religious sites in Italy

Noto Cathedral

Noto Cathedral construction, in the style of the Sicilian Baroque, began in the early 18th century and was completed in 1776. It is dedicated to Saint Nicholas of Myra, and has been the cathedral of the Diocese of Noto since the diocese"s establishment in 1844. The cathedral dome collapsed in 1996 as a result of unremedied structural weakening caused by an earthquake in 1990, to which injudicious building altera ...
Founded: 1776 | Location: Noto, Italy

Santa Maria Maggiore Church

The church Santa Maria Maggiore (late 15th century) stands on the site of the former Lombard church of San Martino (founded in the second half of the 8th century). It has a rectangular shape with a polygonal apse and is oriented east-west. It has a single nave, divided by three arches. It is decorated with early 15th-century frescoes. The frescoes at the bottom of the north wall even belong to an earlier period. The conte ...
Founded: 15th century | Location: Sirmione, Italy

San Carlo al Corso

San Carlo al Corso is a neo-classic church in the center of Milan. The church is managed by the Servite Order. The church facade was designed in 1844 by Carlo Amati and was finished in 1847. It then served as a model for the Chiesa Rotonda in San Bernardino, Switzerland, 1867. The complex was built to replace Convent of the Servite founded as early as 1290 and later was suppressed in 1799. The new church was buil ...
Founded: 1844 | Location: Milan, Italy

San Marcello al Corso

San Marcello al Corso was built before 418, when Pope Boniface I was elected there. Pope Adrian I, in the 8th century, built a church on the same place, which is currently under the modern church. On 22 May 1519, a fire destroyed the church. The money collected for its rebuilding was used to bribe the landsknechts, who were pillaging the city during the Sack of Rome (1527). The work was continued by Antonio da Sangall ...
Founded: 4th century AD | Location: Rome, Italy

Turin Cathedral

Turin Cathedral (Duomo di Torino) is dedicated to Saint John the Baptist and is the seat of the Archbishops of Turin. It was built during 1491–1498, adjacent to a bell tower which had been built in 1470. Designed by Guarino Guarini, the Chapel of the Holy Shroud (the current location of the Shroud of Turin) was added to the structure in 1668–1694. The church lies where the theatre of the ancient Roman city w ...
Founded: 1491-1498 | Location: Turin, Italy

Lecce Cathedral

Lecce Cathedral (Duomo di Lecce) is dedicated to the Assumption of the Virgin Mary. It is the seat of the Archbishop of Lecce. The cathedral was first built in 1144, but underwent repairs in 1230. It was rebuilt in 1659 by the architect Giuseppe Zimbalo by order of bishop Luigi Pappacoda, whose remains are kept in the altar dedicated to Saint Orontius of Lecce, the patron saint of the city. The cathedral is located ...
Founded: 1659 | Location: Lecce, Italy

San Carlo al Corso Church

The Carlo al Corso church replaced an earlier church. This church likely designed by Rosario Gagliardi, was part of the town reconstruction after the 1693 Sicily earthquake. The concave façade has three superimposed orders of columns, identified by their capitals from base to roofline as Doric, Ionic and Corinthian; in the progression expected in classical construction. The third story has floral oculus. The interior ha ...
Founded: 1693 | Location: Noto, Italy

Santa Maria Assunta Church

The history of the Church of Our Lady of the Assumption is closely linked to the Benedictine monastery of St. Mary, which, according to oral tradition, was built when a Byzantine icon of the Virgin was brought to Positano and venerated in our church thereafter. The abbey allegedly dates back to the second half of the 10h century. It was mentioned for the first time in a manuscript of the late 11th century. The years of ...
Founded: 10th century | Location: Positano, Italy

Santa Ninfa dei Crociferi Church

Santa Ninfa dei Crociferi – dedicated to one of the patron saints of Palermo – is one of the first buildings erected after the opening of Via Maqueda, the second most important street of the city. The construction of the church began on in 1601. The construction was fostered by the Palermo Senate and financed with donations from several noble families of the city. The original project was probably prepared in Rome. ...
Founded: 1601 | Location: Palermo, Italy

Basilica della Collegiata

The Basilica della Collegiata was built in the early 18th century, after the earthquake of 1693 that had destroyed most of the city. The design of the church is attributed to Angelo Italia (1628–1700), who changed the orientation of the previous edifice destroyed by the earthquake, in order to have it facing the new via Uzeda (current Etnea Street) according to the rebuilding plan of the city. The façade, design ...
Founded: 1768 | Location: Catania, Italy

Como Cathedral

Como Cathedral is one of the most important buildings in the region. It is commonly described as the last Gothic cathedral built in Italy: construction on it, on the site of the earlier Romanesque cathedral dedicated to Santa Maria Maggiore, began in 1396, 10 years after the foundation of Milan Cathedral. The construction works, started under the supervision of Lorenzo degli Spazzi di Laino, did not finish until 1770 with ...
Founded: 1396 | Location: Como, Italy

San Gregorio Armeno

San Gregorio Armeno ('St. Gregory of Armenia') is a church and a monastery in Naples. It is one of the most important Baroque complexes in Naples. In the 8th century, the iconoclast decrees in Greece caused a number of religious orders to flee the Byzantine empire and seek refuge elsewhere. San Gregorio Armeno in Naples was built in the 10th century over the remains of a Roman temple dedicated to Ceres, ...
Founded: 10th century | Location: Naples, Italy

Sant'Agata Church

A church at the site of Sant"Agata was present by the 8th century, when the neighborhood was located outside the city walls, but after the 1184 fire destroyed the ancient church, it was reconstructed in the 15th-century in Gothic style. Destruction by fire of this church was somewhat paradoxical, since Saint Agatha was the saint invoked for protection against fires. Further modifications were completed along the cent ...
Founded: 15th century | Location: Brescia, Italy

Basilica di San Giovanni e Paolo

The Basilica di San Giovanni e Paolo is one of the largest churches in Venice with the status of minor basilica. After the 15th century the funeral services of all of Venice's doges were held here, and twenty-five doges are buried in the church. The huge brick edifice was designed in the Italian Gothic style, and completed in the 1430s. It is the principal Dominican church of Venice, and as such was built to hold large ...
Founded: 1430s | Location: Venice, Italy

Santa Maria dei Miracoli Church

Santa Maria dei Miracoli, also known as the 'marble church', it is one of the best examples of the early Venetian Renaissance including colored marble, a false colonnade on the exterior walls (pilasters), and a semicircular pediment.  Built between 1481 and 1489 by Pietro Lombardo to house a miraculous icon of the Virgin Mary. The plans for the church were expanded in 1484 to include the construction of a new ...
Founded: 1481-1489 | Location: Venice, Italy

Montevergine Church

Montevergine Church was built between 1695 and 1697, after the 1693 Sicily earthquake that leveled the town. It was built for the Benedictine nuns of the Order of Monte Vergine. The church is dedicated to St Jerome. The concave facade, flanked by two bell-towers, was completed in 1748 by Vincenzo Sinatra. The church rises at the top of stone steps, and the layout has a single nave flanked by Corinthian columns, and a ...
Founded: 1695 | Location: Noto, Italy

Cefalù Cathedral

The Cathedral of Cefalù is one of nine structures included in the UNESCO World Heritage Site known as Arab-Norman Palermo and the Cathedral Churches of Cefalù and Monreale. The cathedral was erected between 1131 and 1240 in the Norman architectural style, the island of Sicily having been conquered by the Normans in 1091. According to tradition, the building was erected after a vow made to the Holy Saviour by ...
Founded: 1131-1240 | Location: Cefalù, Italy

Ravello Cathedral

Built in the 11th century with support from the Rufolo family, the Duomo is a combination of Baroque and Romanesque styles. Dedicated to St. Pantaleone, the church has undergone extensive modifications and restorations over the past 900 years. The Duomo’s shining white façade dates back to the last major restoration in 1931. The Duomo’s bell tower, which dates back to the 13th century, shows Moorish and Byzantine inf ...
Founded: 11th century | Location: Ravello, Italy

Otranto Cathedral

Otranto Cathedral is dedicated to the Annunciation of the Virgin Mary. It is the archiepiscopal seat of the Archdiocese of Otranto. The cathedral was consecrated in 1088. It is 54 metres long by 25 metres wide and is built on 42 monolithic granite and marble columns from unknown quarries. Its plan is a three-aisled nave with an apsidal east end. On either side of the west façade are two lancet windows. The most famou ...
Founded: 1088 | Location: Otranto, Italy

Santa Susanna Church

The Church of Saint Susanna at the Baths of Diocletian is located on the Quirinal Hill in Rome. There has been a titular church associated to its site as far back as AD 280. The current church was rebuilt from 1585 to 1603 for a monastery of Cistercian nuns founded on the site in 1587 which still exists there. About 280, an early Christian house of worship was established on this site, which, like many of the earliest C ...
Founded: 280 AD / 1585 | Location: Rome, Italy

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Château d'Olhain

The Château d'Olhain is probably the most famous castle of the Artois region. It is located in the middle of a lake which reflects its picturesque towers and curtain walls. It was also a major stronghold for the Artois in medieval times and testimony to the power of the Olhain family, first mentioned from the 12th century.

The existence of the castle was known early in the 13th century, but the present construction is largely the work of Jean de Nielles, who married Marie d’Olhain at the end of the 15th century.

The marriage of Alix Nielles to Jean de Berghes, Grand Veneur de France (master of hounds) to the King, meant the castle passed to this family, who kept it for more than 450 years. Once confiscated by Charles Quint, it suffered during the wars that ravaged the Artois. Besieged in 1641 by the French, it was partly demolished by the Spaniards in 1654, and finally blown-up and taken by the Dutch in 1710. Restored in 1830, it was abandoned after 1870, and sold by the last Prince of Berghes in 1900. There is also evidence that one of the castles occupants was related to Charles de Batz-Castelmore d'Artagnan, the person Alexandre Dumas based his Three Musketeers charictor d'Artagnan on.

During the World War I and World War II, the castle was requisitioned first by French troops, then Canadian and British soldiers. The current owner has restored the castle to its former glory.