Duomo

Price guide: Free

Via Duomo 149, Naples, 80132

Price guide: Free

Duomo
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By Jan Fuscoe, your Naples expert

I write for DK Eyewitness, Fodor's .... Read more
#9 of 9
expert-rated things to do in Naples
Expert overall rating:4.1 out of 5
Value for money:
0
N/A
Recommended for:
Culture vultures, Families with teenagers, First-time travellers, Mature travellers, Seasoned travellers, Art, Design and architecture, History

Expert review of Duomo

Naples' cathedral is a miracle on Via del Duomo.

It may not look much from the outside but this one is definitely hiding its lights. Naples' cathedral dates back to the 4th century so it's only fitting that the remains of its patron saint, San Gennaro, are kept here and that, three times a year, the city comes together to witness a miracle upon which Neapolitans believe that the fortune of the city rests: the liquification of a vial of San Gennaro's blood, now held in the Museo del Tesoro. The story goes that when San Gennaro was beheaded back in 305, his blood was taken to the catacombs of San Gennaro where, 100 years later, it mysteriously liquified. It is said that the blood now liquifies three times a year (including on San Gennaro's feast day of September 19) and on the rare occasions when it doesn't, disaster befalls the city: such as in 1980 when an earthquake hit Naples.

Apart from the dramatic happenings, the Duomo is noted for its magnificent gilt ceiling, paintings by Luca Giordano, a marvellous bronze gate, beautiful frescoes by Domenichino (before his early demise, possibly from poisoning by the wildly ambitiious Ribera, who painted the alterpiece, The Martydom of San Gennaro), as well as the oldest building of its kind in the west - the 4th-century baptistry. 

Price advice: 

The Duomo itself is free, but if you want to see the baptistry as well as the archeological area, where you will find Greek and Roman walls, along with early Christian mosaics, it will cost 3 euros. A ticket for the Museo del Tesoro where San Gennaro's relics are kept along with other statuary is 5.50 euros (3.50 euros for reductions). 

Expert tips: 
Ribera's masterpiece is above the right-hand altar.

More information on Duomo:

Price guide:
Free
Type:
Museum, Religious site
Address:
Via Duomo 149, Naples, 80132
Telephone:
081 449 097
Website:
http://www.museosangennaro.com
Months open:
All year round
Opening times:
Church: Mon-Sat 8.30am-12.30pm, 4.30-7pm, Sun 8.30am-1pm, 5-7pm. Archaeological area and baptistry: Mon-Sat 9am-noon, 4.30-7pm, Sun 9am-noon. Museo del Tesoro: Tue-Sat 9.30am-5pm, Sun 9.30am-2.30pm. Closed Mondays.
Indoor/outdoor?:
Indoor
Free tags / Keywords:
San Gennaro, Luca Giordano, Miracle

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