Situated on the banks of the River Adaja, San Segundo church was built in Caleno granite between 1130 and 1160. Before it was dedicated to St Segundo after the remains of the town's first Bishop were found in 1519, it had been dedicated to St Sebastian and St Lucia. The Bishop's remains were moved in 1615 with great pomp and ceremony to the chapel of St Segundo, which was built on to the apse of the Cathedral specifically as a final resting place.
The layout draws inspiration from the basilica style and has three naves and an upper end with three apses closed off with calotte and barrel vaults. Its slightly off-centre north-eastern orientation is probably due to the existence of an earlier church or an error made when the construction was being marked out. The southern porch has five archivolts set on columns and there are others of similar characteristics to the North and West, which were replaced in the 16th century. The structure of the naves was replaced in 1521 with a structure that shows Mudejar-style influences. Its current appearance is the result of refurbishment work that was carried out as from the 16th century.
The decoration with Romanesque sculptures is limited to a number of capitals with plant and figurative motifs. Inside, it boasts a sculpture of St Segundo in prayer by Juan de Juni.
There is a Roman altar stone opposite the west entrance that was found during recent archaeological work on the church.References:
The eight towns in south-eastern Sicily, including Ragusa, were all rebuilt after 1693 on or beside towns existing at the time of the earthquake which took place in that year. They represent a considerable collective undertaking, successfully carried out at a high level of architectural and artistic achievement. Keeping within the late Baroque style of the day, they also depict distinctive innovations in town planning and urban building. Together with seven other cities in the Val di Noto, it is part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
In 1693 Ragusa was devastated by a huge earthquake, which killed some 5,000 inhabitants. Following this catastrophe the city was largely rebuilt, and many Baroque buildings from this time remain in the city. Most of the population moved to a new settlement in the former district of Patro, calling this new municipality 'Ragusa Superiore' (Upper Ragusa) and the ancient city 'Ragusa Inferiore' (Lower Ragusa). The two cities remained separated until 1926, when they were fused together to become a provincial capital in 1927.