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Monumental Complex of Saint Nicholas

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Monumental Complex of Saint Nicholas

Description

Between 1995 and 1998, as the square hosting the monument complex, Piazza della Repubblica, was being renovated, ancient structures made in opus quadratum were found. Dating to the Roman Republican period, those structures are thought to be the podium of a big three-celled temple that faced the valley, probably a Capitolium or the Temple of Juno mentioned in classical sources. The church of the Assumption of Mary, partially demolished in the seventeenth century, was built on the temple’s walls in the early Christian age and altered in the Middle Ages. The remains of the seventeenth-century walls belonged to the Seminary of the Christian Doctrine Fathers. The parvise’s flooring is partially made of the basalt slabs from the 19th-century pavement of Piazza del Popolo in Rome.

In front of the entrance of the town hall, the Fontana della Bella Flora (Bella Flora Fountain) can be seen. Built in 1886, its feminine figure has become the emblem of Ariccia. However, she does not represent, as tradition dictates, the nymph Aricia or the goddess Flora, since the statue comes from a tomb in the old cemetery of Ariccia.

The Palazzo Municipale (Town Hall) was built in 1997–98 in post-modern forms according to the design of Francesco Petrucci. It stands on the site of the Seminary of the Christian Doctrine Fathers, founded in 1668.

The Church of Saint Nicholas of Bari was built in 1665–66 on the site of the paleo-Christian Church of the Assumption, which was then moved to Piazza di Corte. Gian Lorenzo Bernini designed the Church and then entrusted the execution to his brother Luigi. Only the central nave of the old Church of the Assumption was preserved from the demolition and used as a basis for the centrally planned present church. It is covered with a vaulted ceiling and has two side chapels. The facade has a single order divided by pilasters with a simple tympanum without friezes. Since 2008 the Church of Saint Nicholas has hosted the Bernini Theatre.


Prepared by

Museo Senza Frontiere, Saverio Capozzi, sulla base di materiale fornito da:
arch. Francesco Petrucci; © Museum With No Frontiers (MWNF).

Complesso di San Nicola © MWNF
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