• About

    The Church of the Holy Souls in Purgatory (Chiesa delle Santissime Anime del Purgatorio) is a Baroque church located in Ragusa Ibla, the historical center of Ragusa.

     

    SHORT HISTORY

    The church was built on the initiative of the Mazza family in the second half of the 17th century, dedicated to all the Saints and the Souls of Purgatory, and opened for worship on May 6, 1658. It was one of the few churches in Ragusa to withstand the earthquake of 1693, an event which caused around 5,000 deaths and destroyed almost entirely the ancient center of the city.

    In 1729, the church and the whole neighborhood came under the jurisdiction of the Church of San Giorgio. The bell tower was built in the first quarter of the 18th century, separated from the church, and placed above a stretch of the ancient Byzantine walls of Ragusa.

    In 1740, due to its small size, the church was rebuilt with a basilica plan with three naves, two chapels and a large presbytery with an apse. In 1757, the facade was finished, but the church was reopened for worship only in 1787, after the completion of the works in the presbytery area.

     

    ARCHITECTURE

    The facade of the church, consisting of two orders crowned by a tympanum, is preceded by a steep staircase that enhances and enriches it.

    The first order of the facade is divided into three parts by columns with Corinthian capitals placed on high bases. In the central part, there is the entrance portal, decorated by carvings with plant motifs, above which are sculptures depicting the Souls in Purgatory.

    Inside, ten stone columns with Corinthian capitals built in 1741 divide the three naves. The apse is raised two steps above the central nave. The main altar is in polychrome marble, bordered by four Corinthian style columns.

     

    HOW TO GET THERE

    The church is located at the western edge of Ragusa Ibla, in Piazza della Repubblica, about 1.6 kilometers from the Ragusa train station and 2.5 kilometers from the Ragusa bus terminal. To find the church on foot, use the map below.

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