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Basilica di Santa Maria del Carmine

The façade of Basilica di Santa Maria del Carmine




Giuseppe Ruggieri e Giulio Mannaioni

The church, located in the homonymous square, is dedicated to the Beata Vergine del Carmine; it was built in 1268 as part of a carmelite monastery still existing; only some Romanesque-Gothic remains of the original building are still visible. The whole complex was enlarged for the first time in 1328; in 1464 the chapter hall and the refectory were added. The works were completed in 1476. The interior of the church was almost completely destroyed in 1771 by a fire (fortunately, the fire spared the Cappella Brancacci, a masterpiece of Renaissance painting, frescoed by Masolino da Panicale, Masaccio and Filippino Lippi) that made necessary a complete reconstruction of the church; the works, entrusted to architects Giuseppe Ruggieri and Giulio Mannaioni, were completed, except for the façade that is still unfinished, between 1775 and 1782.

The façade base is made of Pietraforte Sandstone with decorations of Pietra Serena Sandstone; the door frame is realized by using Pietraforte Sandstone; around the door frame the façade is plastered. The upper façade is made of exposed rough stone mainly constituted by Pietraforte Sandstone with additions of Pietra Serena Sandstone, rare pebbles of Alberese Limestone and Bricks held together by Malta.

The Pietraforte Sandstone at the façade base
Door frame in Pietraforte Sandstone
The upper part of the façade in rough stone and Bricks