Friday, February 5, 2016
Duomo di Milano
Milan Cathedral (Italian: Duomo di Milano; Milanese: Domm de Milan) is the cathedral church of Milan in Lombardy, northernItaly.
Milan’s layout, with streets either radiating from the Duomo or circling it, reveals that the Duomo occupies what was the most central site in Roman Mediolanum, that of the public basilica facing the forum. Saint Ambrose’s ‘New Basilica’ was built on this site at the beginning of the 5th century, with an adjoining basilica added in 836. When a fire damaged both buildings in 1075, they were later rebuilt as the Duomo.
The plan consists of a nave with four side-aisles, crossed by a transept and then followed by choir and apse. The height of the nave is about 45 meters, the highest Gothic vaults of a complete church (less than the 48 meters of Beauvais Cathedral, which was never completed).
The roof is open to tourists (for a fee), which allows many a close-up view of some spectacular sculpture that would otherwise be unappreciated. The roof of the cathedral is renowned for the forest of openwork pinnacles and spires, set upon delicate flying buttresses.
In true Gothic style, the ambience of the interior is rather dark thanks to the stained-glass windows and heavy stone columns. Not to be missed is a schlep up the stairs (or catch a lift up on the elevator) to access the rooftop terraces. Here, surrounded by the cathedral’s eerie marble towers, you can see across Milan, all the way out to the peaks of the Alps.