San Francesco di Paola church is located at the west side of Piazza del Plebiscito, the city's main square. In the early 19th century, King Joachim Murat of Naples (Napoleon's brother-in-law) planned the entire square and the large building with the colonnades as a tribute to the emperor. When Napoleon was finally dispatched, the Bourbons were restored to the throne of Naples. Ferdinand I continued the construction - finished in 1816 - but converted the final product into the church one sees today. He dedicated it to Saint Francis of Paola, who had stayed in a monastery on this site in the 16th century.
The church is reminiscent of the Pantheon in Rome. The façade is fronted by a portico resting on six columns and two Ionic pillars. Inside, the church is circular with two side chapels. The dome is 53 metres high.
The interior has a number of statues: a San Giovanni Crisostomo by Gennaro Calì, Sant'Ambrogio by Tito Angelini, St Luke by Antonio Calì, a St Matthew by Carlo Finelli, a St John Evangelist by Pietro Tenerani, St Mark by Giuseppe de Fabris, a Sant'Agostino by Tommaso Arnaud, and a Sant'Attanasio by Angelo Solani.
In the chapels on the right, there are the following altarpieces: San Nicola da Tolentino and St Francis of Paola receives a stem of charity from an Angel, by Nicola Carta, Final Communion of San Ferdinando di Castiglia by Pietro Benvenuti, a Transit di St Joseph by Camillo Gerra, the Immaculate Conception and the death of Sant'Andrea Avellino by Tommaso de Vivo.
Before the main altar, is a 1641 work by Anselmo Cangiano, transferred here in 1835, from the church of the Santi Apostoli. In the apse is a painting of St Francis of Paola resuscitates a dead man by Vincenzo Camuccini. In the sacristy is an Immaculate Conception by Gaspare Landi and a Circumcision of Jesus by Antonio Campi.References:
The Castle of Gruyères is one of the most famous in Switzerland. It was built between 1270 and 1282, following the typical square plan of the fortifications in Savoy. It was the property of the Counts of Gruyères until the bankruptcy of the Count Michel in 1554. His creditors the cantons of Fribourg and Bern shared his earldom. From 1555 to 1798 the castle became residence to the bailiffs and then to the prefects sent by Fribourg.
In 1849 the castle was sold to the Bovy and Balland families, who used the castle as their summer residency and restored it. The castle was then bought back by the canton of Fribourg in 1938, made into a museum and opened to the public. Since 1993, a foundation ensures the conservation as well as the highlighting of the building and the art collection.
The castle is the home of three capes of the Order of the Golden Fleece. They were part of the war booty captured by the Swiss Confederates (which included troops from Gruyères) at the Battle of Morat against Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy in 1476. As Charles the Bold was celebrating the anniversary of his father's death, one of the capes is a black velvet sacerdotal vestment with Philip the Good's emblem sewn into it.
A collection of landscapes by 19th century artists Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, Barthélemy Menn and others are on display in the castle.