Catania

The Benedictines’ library

The work of the Benedictines not only followed religious and charitable commitments, but scientific undertakings, too. The monastery’s first collection of books was probably created at its foundation and used exclusively by the monks, who followed the strict Benedictine rule also through the study of literature and science.
They established relations with the city’s cultural institutions, opening to and acquiring from it important collections over the centuries.
There were around 24 thousand volumes of rare, ancient and modern manuscripts and parchments; this cultural wealth meant that the monks were great connoisseurs and disseminators of ancient knowledge, focused, at the same time, on the future.
After the eruption of 1669 and the earthquake of 1693 the monastery suffered great losses, but the monks managed to save part of the collection, which they looked after until the library was rebuilt. Located in most of the 18th-century wing, the construction of the new main hall of the library was entrusted to Giovanni Battista Vaccarini , who designed it with typical late Baroque features.
In fact, the monumental hall with a central elliptical plan is an authoritative room almost completely covered by orderly wooden bookshelves that reach the decorated vault, occupying the spaces up to the circular windows that illuminate the vast room from above.
In addition, the monastery had five other sumptuous rooms used for the Benedictine Museum , designed to closely match the library.
Today the former museum rooms are home to the library’s consultation and reading rooms.
biblioteca

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Art in the cathedral

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Views denied, views conquered: the power of the devout Benedictines

The senses tell about Palazzo Trigona

Unusual iconographies: the Burgos crucifix

The Church of Madonna della Stella

The Church of St. John the Evangelist

Scenography and devotion for St. Agatha

Virtuosity, decorations and altars

The city of Modica, a balance between nature and urbanism

The Church of St. Mary of the Mountain

The dynamics of the Church of San Michele

A Nobel Prize in Modica

Baroque and the loss of balance in the 16th century

Akrai and Syracuse: an unbreakable bond

The Infiorata of Noto, a modern tradition

The triumph of Baroque: expansion of spaces

St. Agatha and the candelore

The Duomo di San Giorgio (Cathedral of St. George)

The Monastery of the Benedictine nuns

Reconstruction after the earthquake

The Badia di Sant’Agata (St. Agatha’s Abbey)

The senses tell the Benedictine Monastery and the Church of San Nicolò l’Arena

Barresi-Branciforte: the lords of the fiefdom and the modernisation of the town

The art of maiolica

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The city palace

Garden of Novices and the restorations by Giancarlo De Carlo

Verticality and dynamism of the façade of the Church of San Carlo

Palazzo della Cancelleria: from former stable to the Nicastro family

Baroque creativity: recurring themes

A stone garden

The senses tell of Palazzo della Cancelleria

A unifying project for the city of Catania

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The Staircase of Angels

The senses tell the Cathedral of Sant’Agata

The illusion of light and the decorative splendour

The Palazzo dei due mori

The Monte delle Prestanze in the new city layout

A compromise between Neoclassicism and Baroque

Scicli, the city of Baroque scenery

A new site for the church of San Giorgio

The smallest Greek theatre in the world

The expansion of space and changing reality

From the end of the world to rebirth from the rubble

Religious architecture

The two churches

The city within the city

The Madonna dei Conadomini and the art of devotion

The senses tell the story of the Sanctuary Church of Santa Maria della Stella

The senses tell of the Cathedral of San Pietro

Rebirth and urban planning of the city of Noto

Luminous sacred spaces

The senses tell about Palazzo Beneventano

Palazzo Trigona: a building with a complex shape

The Church of St. Julian on Via dei Crociferi

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Carlo and the former Jesuit college

The senses tell the story of the Church of the Badia di Sant’Agata

A casket of precious works

The Benedictines’ library

The interior and works of art

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Giovanni Evangelista

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Expanded spaces, stucco and colourful lights

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Benedetto

The senses tell the Cathedral of San Giorgio

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The Church of St. Paul

Palazzo Zacco, a balance between sobriety and decoration

The senses tell the story of the Church of Santa Maria del Monte

The Church of St. Benedict

Altars, saints and sculptural works

Madonna of the Militia: a singular warrior virgin

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The eagle-shaped city

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The casket of austerity under the great dome

Palazzo Trigona di Canicarao

The new roads of the city

One city, three sites

The interior of the church: space and colour

The works in the church

A story of rebirth

The church of San Nicolò l’Arena: the majesty of an unfinished beauty

The articulated interior spaces

The beginning of an authentic Baroque conception

The Antonino Uccello Birthplace Museum

A heritage of votive works

Militello: The story of an enlightened fiefdom

The Franciscan convent

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Paolo

The senses tell the Church of San Michele

San Domenico and Gagliardi’s work

Piazza Duomo, the elephant fountain, the heart of the city

The Church of St. Francis

City and nature

The senses tell about Palazzo Ducezio

Expansion, spatiality and light in the church of San Domenico

The senses tell about Palazzo Zacco

The interiors: diffused light and Byzantine relics

Fountain of the Nymph Zizza: public water in the town