The Romanesque style San Silvestro Church is located at the end of the Via Garibaldi in L’Aquila. The church needed to be restored after the last earthquake, a work that was completed in 2019. The main attraction in the church is a (copy of) a painting by Raphael.
San Silvestro Church L’Aquila
Address: Piazza San Silvesto – L’Aquila. Phone: +39 334 7105334. Opening times: From 07.00 till 19.00 (Sundays from 07.30 till 19.00). Admission: Free.
History and description
The Chiesa di San Silvestro is located on a square lined with Renaissance buildings. It was built in the 13th century, by the inhabitants of the Collebrincioni Castle. It was constructed on the city walls that used to lead from the Palazzo Reale to the San Silvestro Church. The huge tower on the left side of the church was part of this wall.
The colors of the portal are repeated in two horizontal rows of bricks on the upper part of the facade. A big rose window is placed right above this portal. This window was added in the 14th century.
The eastern side has three narrow windows, the eastern side two large mullioned windows with pointed arches.
What to see
n the 1980’s plaster was removed from the side walls and the sacristy. The frescoes that were found underneath date back to the 13th century.
The apse frescoes were the work of Maestro di Beffi.
Around the year 1517, Giovanni Battista Branconio commissioned Raphael to paint a “Visitation”. The work was placed in the apse of the left nave, which served as the Branconio family chapel. In 1655, despite protests from the locals, Pope Alexander VII gave the painting to the Spanish King Philips IV. The painting that can be seen today is a copy of the original, which is on display in the Prado in Madrid.