The official name of Ravenna Cathedral is Cattedrale Metropolitana della Risurrezione di Nostro Signore Gesù Cristo. However, it is usually referred to as Basilica Ursiana. This first church was completely destroyed in 1734 to make way for the present structure. The architect was Gianfranco Buonamici, who had a three-nave church built instead of five naves. Inside the church, two early Christian sarcophagi are preserved. The round bell tower is 35 meters tall and already existed in 1038.
Cathedral of Ravenna (Basilica Ursiana)
The address of the Cathedral is Piazza Duomo, 1 (tel. +39 0544 30328). The nearest bus stop is Via de Gaspari-Largo Chartres (lines 1, 3, 4, 5, 8, 18, 70, 80, 145, 154, 155, 157, 158, 159, 161, 162, 176, 187). In summer, the Duomo is open Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to noon and from 2:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., respectively. In winter, the doors close as early as 5 p.m. in the afternoon. On Saturdays and Sundays and holidays, the church does not close until 7 p.m. all year round. Ticket price: Free. (Note that prices and times may be subject to change.)
History and description
The current version of Ravenna Cathedral was built in the 18th century, but the floor plan of the original church has been kept intact.
The old, early 5th century cathedral, dedicated to the Santa Resurrezione, had to be razed to the ground because of its dilapidated state. The original church was also called Basilica Ursina because it was commissioned by Bishop Orso.
Not much is known of the first cathedral, except that one of its apses was semicircular inside and polygonal outside. In the 12th century, this apse along with its associated arch was given new mosaics.
The original church had five naves, but with the current construction only three remain. However, a dome and two side chapels were added. The side chapel on the right contains two early Christian sarcophagi.
The round bell tower was built in the 11th century and contrasts with the Baroque style of the current facade.
What to see
Inside the church, there are works of art by Domenico and Andrea Barbiani.