San Lorenzo Maggiore, Naples

4.5
San Lorenzo Maggiore is a church in Naples, Italy. It is located at the precise geographic center of the historic center of the ancient Greek-Roman city, at the intersection of via San Gregorio Armeno and via dei Tribunali. The name "San Lorenzo" may also refer to the new museum now opened on the premises, as well as to the ancient Roman market beneath the church itself, the Macellum of Naples.


The church's origins derive from the presence of the Franciscan order in Naples during the lifetime of St Francis of Assisi, himself. The site of the present church was to compensate the order for the loss of their earlier church on the grounds where Charles I of Anjou decided to build his new fortress, the Maschio Angioino in the late 13th century.


San Lorenzo actually is a church plus monastery. The new museum takes up the three floors above the courtyard and is given over to the entire history of the area that centers on San Lorenzo, beginning with classical archaeology and progressing to a chart display of historical shipping routes from Naples throughout Magna Grecia and the Roman Empire. The museum provides a detailed account of the local "city hall" that was demolished in order to put up the church in the 13th century and continues up past the Angevin period and into more recent history.


Beneath San Lorenzo, about half of an original Roman market has been excavated. The site has been open since 1992, the result of 25 years of painstaking excavation. The market place is the only large-scale Greek-Roman site excavated in the downtown area.


In this church Boccaccio met his beloved Fiammetta (1338).
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  • Basilica di San Lorenzo Maggiore is a church in Naples that is located at the historic center of the ancient city. Founded around the time of St Francis of Assisi, and harboring a unique history...  more »
  • San Lorenzo Maggiore is an amazing church to visit whilst in Naples. The statues and paintings and the architecture of the church is very impressive.  more »
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  • This church was the center of the civic power of Naples in the late Middle Ages to the early modern era. You can still see the six emblems of the neighborhoods of Naples onto the wall of the belltower. The basilica is a continuous surprise. a baroque facade leads into an apparently simple nave - this was a Franciscan church. Yet, each chapel and each niche contains rich sculptures, illustrious sepulchers, paintings (some of which by pupils of Giotto)... and much more! Do take your time to wander around patiently and admire all the jewels of this church.
  • This church was the center of the civic power of Naples in the late Middle Ages to the early modern era. You can still see the six emblems of the neighborhoods of Naples onto the wall of the belltower.A really great place. Fascinating architecture distinguishes this Christian place. It is in the middle of the city and if you visit the old town you should stop by and enjoy a moment of peace.
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