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

Odours and aromas from the kitchens

Try to imagine the smells coming from the basement kitchens that rose to the upper floors and the spaces connected to the two refectories.
One of these spaces used to prepare rich dishes is home to the prodigious 18th-century fireplace hood named “il fornetto” (the little oven), built atop the ancient lava flow of 1669.
The kitchen was one of the most important rooms for monastery life, a sort of factory that fed a large number of monks, like a small world of its own inside the colossal monastery.

Lava and marble

One of the most characteristic elements of the Benedictine monastery is, without a doubt, the strong two-tone colour of the main materials used to build it.
Try to touch a marble column on the staircase then one of the lava stone steps leading to the library, and you’ll immediately notice how different they are.
If you touched them you would feel an immediate difference between the two materials: the marble is smooth with no superficial imperfections, while the lava stone is porous and rough.

Singing and prayer

The life of the Benedictine monks followed the strict rule of Ora et Labora (Pray and Work).
The days were organised into a series of activities: prayer, work and study.
Nor were the monks exempt from prayer at night or early in the morning; they gathered in the night-time chapel, the “night choir”, and sang choruses and prayers to the Lord.

Wow, the colours!

When you think of a kitchen, somewhere clean and full of food, pots and spoons comes to mind. Perhaps for normal, trivial kitchens… because for the monastery kitchen the first thing that comes to mind are the colours of the floor and central structure; a triumph of white, blue, yellow, green and orange.

Bon Appetit!

The kitchen prepared tasty lunches and dinners every day.
In particular, the New Year’s lunch in 1785 had a delicious menu. Shrimp, swordfish and a soup of pasta and fish were prepared as first courses; cod and sunfish with a herb and anchovy sauce were served for the second course, followed by cabbage with tuna and eggs.
The dinner ended with a custard, accompanied by some fruit to finish, in this case apple.
With such a respectable lunch, tasty and rich in every food, you could say the monks were not lacking in anything at all!

A square as the heart of the city

The Barresi-Branciforte lords

Discovering the mother church

The Staircase of Angels

A museum to save a tradition

The senses tell the story of the Church of the Annunciation

Modica, a city with ancient origins

Some masterpieces

The disastrous earthquake

A new site for a new city

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

A colourful floor

A new site for a new church

The Infiorata, a feast of colours and flowers

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

A talking palace

Rosario Gagliardi, the maestro of the Val di Noto

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

Between white and black

The senses tell the Cathedral of Sant’Agata

A new palace for the La Rocca lords

San Benedetto: a treasure reopened to the public

The wall comes to life

New roads for Catania

The Feast of San Giacomo (St. James)

The Baroque town by the sea

Searching for colour

A triumph of colour

A long reconstruction

From St. Thomas to St. Joseph

Baroque and the loss of equilibrium in the 16th century

The façade used as a puppet theatre

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Sebastiano

Palazzo Nicolaci di Villadorata, who is the architect?

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

A new entrance for Santa Chiara (St. Claire)

The senses tell about Palazzo Nicolaci

A symbol for the town

Many owners, one palace

The theatre of taste

Norman apses

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

A hall for the feasts

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

The senses tell the story of the church of San Giuseppe

A design by Vincenzo Sinatra

Two illustrious patron saints

Corbels: a celebration of the Nicolaci family

One city, two sites

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

The cathedral of Sant’Agata: a lengthy reconstruction

The colours of the cathedral

The senses tell the story of the Church of Santa Chiara

The internal colours

The senses tell the story of the Church of Santa Chiara

From International Gothic to present day

St. Agatha and the giant candelabras

Wonderful quick decorations

A small room with a golden entrance

The church of Carmine

St. Sebastian, so much work!

A Nobel Prize in Modica

A feast only for Scicli

The Benedictine Monastery, one of the largest in Europe

Garden of Novices and the restorations by Giancarlo De Carlo

The character of Badia Sant’Agata

The Maiolica of the staircase

The city of museums

A prominent church

The senses tell the story of the Church of San Benedetto

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

Connections with other UNESCO sites

Some prestigious works

San Nicolò l’Arena: an unfinished church

Limestone, the colour of harmony

Militello, the story of an enlightened fiefdom

Places of knowledge: the Benedictines’ library

The Supernatural dimension of the chapel of the Santissimo Sacramento

Feast days

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

The senses tell about Palazzo La Rocca

Fontana della Ninfa Zizza, public water in the town

An eagle-shaped city

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

The chocolate of Modica

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

The senses tell about Palazzo Napolino Tommasi Rosso

The two churches

A city in colour

A miniature city

The Burgos crucifix

One city, three sites

A majestic and luminous church

Feasting in Palazzolo

The kitchen, a treasure chest of colours

The interior and its masterpieces

A half-Baroque church

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

Prominent façade