The Duomo

The Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Flower in Piazza del Duomo is one of the largest churches in the world.  Roses and lilies have been symbols of Mary since earliest times.  The rose, emblematic of her purity, glory and sorrow, was her attribute as Queen of Heaven and a symbol of her love for God and for Christ, her son.  The lily represented her immaculate purity, her innocence and virginity.  This cathedral in Florence stands tall over the city with its magnificent Renaissance dome designed by Filippo Brunelleschi, with the baptistery right across.  The dome is an absolute masterpiece of art, being egg-shaped and made without scaffolding, and it has been enchanting the world since the moment of its creation.  It is referred to as the symbol of Florence, of Renaissance culture, and of all Western humanism.

Michelangelo supposedly said, “It looks like a cricket cage.”  The dome was built between 1420 and 1436 and it is an octagonal structure in stone and brick masonry.  It is actually two domes: one internal and the other external, each composed of eight “sails”, or pendentives.  One of these sails has a greater set-back than the others and supports the rest.  The Dome can only be accessed by booking a slot time.  No elevator is available and there are 463 steps, but once you reach the top, you will have an extraordinary view of Florence.  The climb is not recommended for people with a heart condition or if you are suffering from dizziness or have claustrophobia, as the corridors are narrow making it a tight fit.  The route takes you by the interior of the dome where you can admire Giorgio Vasari’s frescoes of the Last Judgment (shown below), which were actually mostly painted by his less-talented student Frederico Zuccari and finished by 1579.

Written for KL Caley’s Thursday Write Photo – Geometric.

4 thoughts on “The Duomo

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s