some elements of artistic workmanship

Recent restorations have shown that in the construction of the southern elevation, specifically in the portico by Antonio Gambara, dated 1429, some artistic elements were reused. These include the columns, on which the three pointed arches rest; the first column on the left contains a reference to the Qur’an. This is Verse 54 of Surah 7 and specifically: “Who causes the night to cover the day and then the day swiftly pursues the night; Who created the sun and the moon and the stars making them all subservient to His command.. Lo! His is the creation and His is the command. Blessed is Allah, the Lord of the universe.” Dating back to approximately the 13th century, the depiction of the tree of life was discovered during a recent restoration and is located between the three arches and the decorative part of the frieze. The depictions of Virgins and Prophets in the procession that runs along the frieze also date back to the Middle Ages.