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Complex of Santa Chiara

The Monumental Complex of Santa Chiara in Naples Italy, also known as the Monastery of Santa Chiara, is among the most relevant and appreciated monuments of the artistic heritage of Naples. Located in the historic center of Naples Italy, between the homonymous street and Gesù Nuovo Square, the complex extends over a vast area that includes the Basilica of Gothic origin, the monastic rooms, the archaeological area with the remains of a thermal establishment of Roman times, the large area occupied by the Franciscan Opera museum, the famous Majolica Cloister and the large bell tower.

The Monumental Complex of Santa Chiara was built between 1310 and 1328 by the will of King Roberto d’Angiò and his wife, Sancia di Maiorca. The structure also includes a splendid majolica cloister made up of 66 arches resting on as many piperno pillars covered with majolica with plant scenes. Some seats connect the majolica pillars and scenes of everyday life of that time are depicted on them. Frescoes from the 1700s cover the walls of the four sides of the cloister and represent allegories, scenes from the Old Testament and saints. Roberto d’Angiò chose the best painter of the time to have the basilica frescoed, namely Giotto. Scenes describing the life of the Madonna, the miracles of San Francesco and Santa Chiara embellished the walls of the nave.

It is difficult to establish whether they are frescoed directly by the hand of the Master or by the workers of his workshop, unfortunately the Giotto images in Santa Chiara remain a faded memory due to those who, during the seventeenth century, guilty hid them under layers of stucco, stealing an admirable page from history of medieval art. The complex also features a Neapolitan crib from the 1700s, the Opera Museum, an archaeological area, a congress area and a convivial area. The archaeological area is characterized by the presence of a spa complex on which the western areas of the convent and small service rooms are superimposed. Inside the monastery there is one of the cribs made in Naples Italy during the reign of Ferdinand IV of Bourbon. The king was a great enthusiast and collector of nativity scenes and assigned the creation of shepherds to the most important sculptors of the time. If you are planning your holiday to visit Naples Italy, visit the Complex of Santa Chiara is one of the things to do.




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