The 13th century Santissima Annunziata Maggiore Basilica in Naples is part of a bigger complex including, a.o., a hospital. In the 16th century a big part of the church was reconstructed by Vanvitelli.
Santissima Annunziata Maggiore Basilica Naples
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History and description
The Basilica della Santissima Annunziata Maggiore is part of a huge complex, consisting of the church itself, a hospital, and a house for foundlings.
The church was constructed in the 13th century. In 1513 it was enlarged and other modifications took place in 1540.
Twice in its history the church was almost completely destroyed. The first time, in 1757, this was caused by a fire. The second time was during World War II.
The 67 meter high cupola was the work of Domenico Fontana.
The late 16th century Treasury was designed by G.B. Cavagna.
The reconstruction after the fire lasted from 1760 to 1782, and was conducted by the architects Luigi and Carlo Vanvitelli.
What to see
The interior consists of a single nave, flanked by three chapels on each side. Vanvitelli was resposible for the marble and stucco decorations.
Francesco de Mura painted the altar pieces in the transept and the apse.
The right side of the church is the part least affected by the fire. Her you can find the Carafa di Morcone Chapel, the Treasury and the Sacristy.
Belisario Corenzio painted the frescoes in the sacristy in 1605.
The inlay work of the wardrobes in the sacristy was done by Girolamo d’Auria and Salvatore Caccavello. The decorations, which show “Events from the Bible, prophets and saints” were added between 1577 and 1579.