Pictures of Romanesque San Miniato al Monte Church Florence - Italy - { 25 images } Created 10 Apr 2016

Pictures images photos of the church of San Miniato al Monte, Florence. San Miniato al Monte is dedicated to one of the first and only Florentine martyrs. Built in the 11th century the beautiful Romanesque church stands on a hill above the Arno River overlooking Florence. The facade of San Miniato church is built in the shape of a Romanesque basilica and is clad in geometric designs made up of white and green marble. In the centre of the facade is a Byzantine Roman style mosaic of Christ holding his hand up in a blessing and this design is repeated inside on apse of the church. Both mosaics are influenced and were probably made by Eastern Roman Byzantine craftsmen. The cushions that Christ sits on in both are Byzantine in style as are the decorations and the gold background he is depicted against. In the apse mosaic of San Miniato al Monte the throne Christ sits on is surrounded by the symbols of the four evangelists. The major difference between the Sn Miniato mosaics and tradition Byzantine mosaics is the form of the blessing. In the Eastern Church blessings are given with the fingers making up the shape of the Greek “Chi Rho” which are the letter of Jesus Christ in Greek. At the time San Miniato was built the western and Roman churches operated independently and were on the edge of conflict so Christ's arm is raise in blessing and he olds out two fingers which is the blessing used by Roman Catholics. The interior of San Miniato al Monte is a typical Romanesque basilica layout with a naive and two aisles. The Choir and alter are raised below a rounded apse. Below the main altar is a chapel. San Miniato al Monte is the church of an adjoining Olivetan Monastery which is still active. Formerly recognised in 1344 the Olivetan order is part of the Benedictine confederation and founded by Bernado Tolomei is dedicated to Our Lady of Mount Olivet. The Olivet monks are depicted in the Renaissance frescoes of the Sacristy depicting the life of Saint Benedict dating from 1387 and commissioned by Benedetto degli Alberti.

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