• About

    The Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta is the Cathedral of Reggio Emilia, located in Piazza Camillo Prampolini, in the historical center of the city.



    The first documents attesting to the existence of a church in the area date back to the middle of the 9th century. However, the structure was probably built in the 5th century.

    At the beginning of the 10th century, after repeated incursions of the Magyars, the Emperor Ludovico III entrusted bishop Pietro with the construction of the walls around the episcopal palace and the Cathedral.

    On December 26, 1228, the bell tower of the Cathedral collapsed. In 1268, under bishop Guido da Fogliano, the octagonal lantern and the current bell tower were built.

    In 1522, the enormous embossed copper statue of the Madonna with Child, by Bartolomeo Spani, was placed on the lantern.

    In 1544, Prospero Sogari, also known as Clemente, was commissioned to build the new facade of the church. The work on the facade started shortly after, but, due to lack of resources, it was stopped after a while.

    In 1557, the statues of Adam and Eve, also works by Spani, were placed above the main portal.

    Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta - Reggio Emilia

    the facade of the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta

    In 1599, the architect Cosimo Pugliani from Siena significantly modified the interior. He incorporated the ancient Romanesque structure into a Doric entablature.

    The dome was designed in 1623 by Abbot Messori, a local architect who also designed the dome of the Church of San Pietro, located in Via Emilia.

    The barrel vaults of the naves were built in 1778 by Giuseppe Barlaam Vergnani.

    In the 1960s, the important Romanesque paintings placed on the facade were detached and housed in the Diocesan Museum, to protect them from atmospheric agents.



    The current unfinished facade of the Cathedral has a lower order made of pilasters framing niches with the statues of the four patron saints of the city – Grisante, Venerio, Daria and Gioconda.

    The upper part of the facade, with a Romanesque imprint, dates back to the 13th century.

    Above the main portal, there are two statues, depicting Adam and Eve. Above the facade, on the lantern, there is the large 16th-century statue in gilded bronze of the Madonna with Child.

    The interior of the Cathedral has a Latin cross plan and measures 73.30 meters in length. It has three naves with round arches on pillars and three semicircular apses.

    Above the center of the cross, stands the great dome. Two minor domes decorate the apse chapels. The transept rest on the crypt.

    Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta - Reggio Emilia

    the interior of the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta



    The Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta is located about 1.3 kilometers away from the Reggio Emilia railway station.

    The closest bus stop is located in Piazza del Monte, about 100 meters away, on the bus Line E.

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