The Collegiata di San Michele Arcangelo, translated as Collegiate Church of St Michael Archangel, is a richly decorated, Baroque style, Roman Catholic church in Solofra.
The collegiata was instituted by the University of Solofra in 1522. The church building was completed in 1614, and proclaimed basilica in 1685. Over the centuries, it has required a number of reconstructions due to earthquakes. The bell-tower was built in 1564. The idiosyncratic facade, with three portals, has sculptures representing St Michael, the evangelists, and Fathers of the church; it faces the central square in town and the Palazzo Orsini.
The interior is remarkable for a wooden roof with twenty one framed canvases painted by Giovanni Tommaso Guarino, and depicting events from the old testament, while the transept has a ceiling with scenes from the new testament painted by Giovanni Tommaso's brother, Francesco. Other works in the church include an Epiphany by Andrea Sabbatini and an Assumption of the Virgin, witnessed by the Saints by Giovanni de Mari. The main altarpiece is a Coronation of the Virgin (1594 by Giovanni Battista Lama. Below the main altarpiece is a gilded statue of St Michael Archangel.
The church has an elaborated decorated and gilded front to the organ, and carved pulpit by the studio of Giovanni Antonio Scavo.References:
The Church of St Donatus name refers to Donatus of Zadar, who began construction on this church in the 9th century and ended it on the northeastern part of the Roman forum. It is the largest Pre-Romanesque building in Croatia.
The beginning of the building of the church was placed to the second half of the 8th century, and it is supposed to have been completed in the 9th century. The Zadar bishop and diplomat Donat (8th and 9th centuries) is credited with the building of the church. He led the representations of the Dalmatian cities to Constantinople and Charles the Great, which is why this church bears slight resemblance to Charlemagne"s court chapels, especially the one in Aachen, and also to the Basilica of San Vitale in Ravenna. It belongs to the Pre-Romanesque architectural period.
The circular church, formerly domed, is 27 m high and is characterised by simplicity and technical primitivism.