Erice Cathedral

Erice, Italy

Erice Cathedral (Chiesa Madre or Duomo dell'Assunta) was built in the 14th century by King Frederick of Aragon for defensive purposes, because from the bell tower it was possible to monitor the surrounding area and the plains at the foot of Mount Erice.The original forms were in 14th century Gothic style with decorative mosaics and frescoes.In 1856 the church was restored or rather rebuilt, so the mosaics and frescoes disappeared, while the two rows of columns, the three naves and four side chapels of the original church remained.

As soon as you enter the church, on the right there is a chapel in which lies the statue of Our Lady of the Assumption, to whom the church is dedicated. Other important works include the extremely valuable, sixteenth century font and, at the centre of the apse of the church, a Madonna and Child. The niches and bas-reliefs depict various scenes from the life of Christ.

The city venerates Mary as patron saint, and guardian of the surrounding countryside of Erice, honoured with the title of Our Lady of Custonaci, who is celebrated on the last Wednesday of August. A nineteenth century reproduction of the Madonna is kept in the church, while the original is kept and venerated in the sanctuary of Custonaci.

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Address

Via San Giuseppe 1, Erice, Italy
See all sites in Erice

Details

Founded: 14th century
Category: Religious sites in Italy

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