Today’s Florence Cathedral is built around the earlier Santa Reparata Cathedral. This meant that to visit the old church one first had to walk through the facade of the new one. In 1370, when the new cathedral was finished except for the dome, the Santa Reparata was razed to the ground.
Santa Reparata Cathedral Florence
Address, opening hours and entrance fee
Address: Piazza del Duomo – Florence. Telephone: (+39) 055 2302885. Opening Hours: From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Entrance fee: 18 Euro (combi-ticket, including the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo, Brunelleschi’s Dome, Giotto’s Bell Tower and the Baptistery).
History and description
Once you are inside the present Duomo, you can walk down a set of stairs on the right to see excavations of the old Santa Reparata. Here you can also see an inscription on a panel found in 1792 of the tomb of Filippo Brunelleschi.
The Santa Reparata church came to light in the early part of the fifth century AD. It is thought to have measured 52 metres by 25 metres wide and consisted of three naves that were separated by two rows of 14 columns.
Ruins of ancient Roman houses and early Christian mosaics that used to be part of the original church are the highlights.
The biggest highlight by far is a beautiful mosaic depicting a peacock. Restoration of this work took 18 months and was completed in November 2017.
The Santa Reparata Cathedral was located where the western part of the nave of the present cathedral of Florence is.