San Frediano – astounding structure to behold
The incredible Basilica of San Frediano is situated on Piazza San Frediano and is a Romanesque church which can be easily distinguished from the other churches in Lucca for the golden mosaic high that is seen on the facade of the monument. The present church that exists was built somewhere around the 1112 and 1147 with a plenty of changes and constructions that took place over time. However, the church has still its position amongst the most beautiful churches from that period. It is one of the most visited churches here and most loved as well. The enchanting sight of the huge painting on the facade is the main reason each and every tourist visits it.
Know the history
San Frediano was built in 6th century by Saint Fridianus, who was Irish missionary and also a bishop. He was the one who dedicated the church to St. Vincent; however, it was again rededicated to Frediano because he was buried in the crypt. Earlier the church was known as Basilica Longobardorum. The structure that you see today was consecrated by Pope Eugene III in 1112. Many additions took place along with the mosaic and presbytery too was raised so as to accommodate the chapels above the nave.
The beauty of San Frediano
This wonderful church that faces the east is one of the best works of local Romanesque style and has been altered from time to time and today we see the last reconstruction of the church. In its original state is comprised of three aisles width with upper gable shorter than it is today. The beautiful mosaic that we see today was actually created in the 13th century and again given a fresh look in the 19th century. The mosaic depicts Ascension of Christ which is found in Byzantine style. The gold and Byzantine mosaic at the top is the focus of attraction for the visitors, and it simply cannot be missed. You will find the depiction of the 12 apostles here. The facade is itself a true masterpiece with equal importance given to the interiors as well. One can say that the art has evolved over the centuries as we see different types of work done inside and outside the church.
The interiors are just arresting here in the Basilica that is built of white marble. There are various notable art works and also the mummified body of the Saint. Just as you enter the basilica, you will admire the huge baptismal font that is right from the 12th century. The carved figures on the basin depict the story of the Moses. On the right aisle is the important religious figure of St. Zita. This mummified body is displayed in a whole glass cabinet. Everything about her is depicted on the chapel wall. The well-preserved frescoes are well admired by the visitors. The columns and walls inside the basilicas’ chapel are truly masterpieces. The highlight is, of course, the paintings on the ceilings done by artists Amico Aspertini. The painting is about the God surrounded by prophets and angels that are rather an astounding art. Of course, the next attraction is the carved altarpiece at trenta chapel which depicts Madonna and the child. Besides this, there are various art treasures that are displayed inside and a very fantastic collection.
Sight to cherish
The basilica is a sight to behold for the visitors and when taking a walk alongside the walls, one can admire this old monument and appreciate the find architecture that prevailed in those times. This place is very charming with a beautiful square and with it the church that is situated in a very prominent place.