Sunday, March 11, 2007

The Duomo in Pisa

The Duomo, located in the Piazza del Duomo (also known as the Campo dei Miracoli) in Pisa, stands in the middle of the square between the Leaning Tower and the Baptistery. It is a medieval cathedral dedicated to St. Mary. The cathedral was begun in 1064 by the architect Buscheto. The facade is made of grey marble and white stone with small amounts of colored marble. The large bronze doors at the front of the cathedral were made by Giambologna. The real entrance to the cathedral is from the rear through Bonanno Pisano's doors that were made in 1180. The interior features black and white marble with a gilded ceiling and a dome filled with frescoes. After the fire in 1595, most of cathedral had to be redecorated. Hanging from the ceiling of the nave is a large incense lamp. Galileo supposedly developed his theory about the movement of a pendulum by watching the lamp swing back and forth. The church contains the body of St. Ranieri (the patron saint of Pisa) as well as the tomb of the Roman Emperor, Henry VII. Like its neighbor the Leaning Tower, the Duomo is also at a slight tilt.
Amy Altman

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