Catania

The disastrous earthquake

The city of Catania is located in eastern Sicily, overlooking the Ionian Sea, and lies on the slopes of Mount Etna.
veduta EtnaThe people of Catania are deeply attached to the volcano, a symbol of the city, but it is also the cause of immense disasters such as the eruption in 1669.
In 1693, a violent earthquake struck Catania and destroyed it completely; only the walls, fortifications and some ancient buildings survived. The people of Catania then had two options: abandon the old city forever, or focus their energies on rebuilding it on the same site.
Given its strategic position for trade between the coast and further inland, they decided not to change location and so began an extraordinary rebirth.
All state, religious and secular authorities participated in the reconstruction, demonstrating remarkable organisational capacity.
Under the supervision of the Duke of Camastra , a reconstruction and restructuring plan was implemented, which still forms the urban fabric of Catania today. The current Piazza Duomo was recognised as the central point around which the new main roads were designed.

Wonderful quick decorations

The Infiorata, a feast of colours and flowers

One city, three sites

The chocolate of Modica

The Maiolica of the staircase

A triumph of colour

The colours of the cathedral

A small room with a golden entrance

A hall for the feasts

A majestic and luminous church

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

The internal colours

Some masterpieces

Places of knowledge: the Benedictines’ library

The Feast of San Giacomo (St. James)

St. Agatha and the giant candelabras

The façade used as a puppet theatre

The Supernatural dimension of the chapel of the Santissimo Sacramento

An eagle-shaped city

A long reconstruction

Searching for colour

San Nicolò l’Arena: an unfinished church

The city of museums

San Benedetto: a treasure reopened to the public

Feasting in Palazzolo

From International Gothic to present day

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Benedetto

The Burgos crucifix

The church of Carmine

The senses tell about Palazzo Nicolaci

Garden of Novices and the restorations by Giancarlo De Carlo

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Sebastiano

A museum to save a tradition

A new site for a new church

Between white and black

The senses tell the story of the church of San Giuseppe

The Staircase of Angels

A Nobel Prize in Modica

A new entrance for Santa Chiara (St. Claire)

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

Baroque and the loss of equilibrium in the 16th century

Connections with other UNESCO sites

The cathedral of Sant’Agata: a lengthy reconstruction

The senses tell the story of the church of Santa Maria del Carmelo

A city in colour

A symbol for the town

Two illustrious patron saints

The senses tell the story of the Church of the Annunciation

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

The senses tell the story of the Church of Santa Chiara

Church of San Giuliano (St. Julian) on Via dei Crociferi: reconstruction

The senses tell about Palazzo La Rocca

The two churches

The character of Badia Sant’Agata

The senses tell about Palazzo Napolino Tommasi Rosso

A prominent church

A square as the heart of the city

The Baroque town by the sea

Modica, a city with ancient origins

Limestone, the colour of harmony

A colourful floor

Fontana della Ninfa Zizza, public water in the town

A talking palace

The senses tell the story of the Church of Santa Chiara

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Giuliano ai Crociferi

The senses tell the Cathedral of Sant’Agata

Some prestigious works

Norman apses

The role of the religious orders in rebuilding the Val di Noto

Palazzo Nicolaci di Villadorata, who is the architect?

The wall comes to life

Corbels: a celebration of the Nicolaci family

The interior and its masterpieces

The kitchen, a treasure chest of colours

The senses tell the story of the church of San Giovanni Battista

A design by Vincenzo Sinatra

The theatre of taste

Prominent façade

St. Sebastian, so much work!

Discovering the mother church

A new site for a new city

From the contrast of the exterior to the internal jubilation of colours

The senses tell the Benedictine Monastery and San NicoIò l’Arena

Rosario Gagliardi, the maestro of the Val di Noto

The senses tell the Mother Church of San Nicolò and of the Santissimo Salvatore

From St. Thomas to St. Joseph

A new palace for the La Rocca lords

A feast only for Scicli

Feast days

The Barresi-Branciforte lords

Freedom of worship and the role of the Catholic Church in the diffusion of Baroque

One city, two sites

The Benedictine Monastery, one of the largest in Europe

Many owners, one palace

The disastrous earthquake

New roads for Catania

A half-Baroque church

Militello, the story of an enlightened fiefdom

A miniature city