Back to Bologna – Day 2 – Part 2 – Basilica di San Francesco

In the middle of the street, in Piazza Malpighi, you will find the Colonna dell’Immacolata.  The copper statue of the Madonna, at the top of the column, dates from 1638, and is the work of the artist, Giovanni Tedeschi, based on a design by Guido Reni.

Approaching the Basilica di San Francesco, at the edge of the churchyard, you will see the Tombe dei Glossatori.  The Glossatori were the Bolognese lawyers who founded the Law Department of the University of Bologna.  The name comes from the fact that they added glosses, notes, and postscripts to the legal texts and manuscripts they used in their lessons.  The city honored them by keeping their remains in the monument we see today.  Inside the three tombs, you will find the remains of the glossators, Accursio and his son Francesco, as well as the jurists, Odofredo and Rolandino dei Romanzi.

As you walk along the walls of the former Convento di San Francesco, stop for a moment to gaze at the historical plaques, and the remains of faded frescoes all around you.  The plaques below honor the citizens of the city who helped finance the restoration of the basilica.

Another plaque pays tribute to the cardinal, Ferdinando Millino, who died in 1612.

The Basilica di San Francesco dates from 1236.  The entire structure, with the exception of the campanile, was built collectively by the Franciscan community.  The members designed and constructed the entire basilica together.  The campanile was erected later, in 1397, and was designed by Antonio di Vincenzo.

At the base of the campanile, you will find the tomb of Pietro Canetoli, who died in 1382.

Since we approached the church from behind, we entered via the side doorway.

To our delight, we discovered a flower market in the piazza, in front of the church.  We were lucky, as the market only takes place on Tuesdays, from 8:00am through 1:00pm.


Next up: We continue our day exploring more of the city, including some of the ancient city gates!


Note: This blog is written in English and Spanish, and the author takes no responsibility for the quality of any other translations that may appear.  If you have enjoyed this post, please, check out our archives for more posts from Bologna, as well as other Italian destinations.  Grazie!


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