Manfredonia Cathedral is dedicated to Saint Laurence of Siponto, one of the patron saints of the city. The construction of a cathedral, after the transferral here of the seat of the bishops of Siponto, began in 1270 and finished in 1274. The first building was destroyed by the Turks in 1620, and was not rebuilt until 1700, using the ruins of the old Angevin church on the authority of the then bishop, Bartolomeo della Cueva, Cardinal Vincenzo Maria Orsini (later Pope Benedict XIII), and Mgr. Andrea Cesarano. Della Cueva modified the main entrance, moving it to the opposite end of the church. He also had the canons' stalls constructed and the main altar.
Formerly the main entrance was where the campanile now stands that was built by Cardinal Orsini in 1677. The bell from the old campanile given by Archbishop Marullo in 1646 and cast by the famous Napoletan bellsetter Onofrio Giordano was transferred to the new tower.
In the cathedral are frescoes of 1940-1941, by Natale Penati of Milan, representing: Pope Julius III and Pope Benedict XIII; the apparition of Saint Lawrence to Totila; Justinus and companions, the saints of Siponto; and the Martyrs of Forconio.
The protectress of Manfredonia is the Madonna of Siponto, and the protector, San Lorenzo Maiorano (Laurence of Siponto), whose body was moved here from Siponto by Bishop Matteo Orsini, a member of the Dominican Order and later a cardinal, on 30 October 1327. The painting and the statue of the Madonna with her splendid crown of gold sprinkled with diamonds were blessed by Cardinal Angelo Giuseppe Roncalli, later Pope John XXIII, on 28 August 1955, the feast of the Coronation of the Virgin.
During the fire and the destruction of the cathedral by the Turks the body of Saint Laurence was also destroyed, except for the right arm, which remains in the cathedral today.
In the 1960s at the wish of the bishop Cesarano the new façade in travertine marble was constructed, which incorporates the marble statue of John XXIII created by the sculptor Aronne del Vecchio.References:
Kristiansten Fortress was built to protect the city against attack from the east. Construction was finished in 1685. General Johan Caspar von Cicignon, who was chief inspector of kuks fortifications, was responsible for the new town plan of Trondheim after the great fire of 18 April 1681. He also made the plans for the construction of Kristiansten Fortress.
The fortress was built during the period from 1682 to 1684 and strengthened to a complete defence fortification in 1691 by building an advanced post Kristiandsands bastion in the east and in 1695 with the now vanished Møllenberg skanse by the river Nidelven. These fortifications were encircled by a continuous palisade and thereby connected to the fortified city. In 1750 the fortress was modernized with new bastions and casemates to protect against mortar artillery.