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Basilica of San Vitale – Ravenna

Basilica di San Vitale, Via San Vitale, Ravenna, RA, Italia

Basilica of San Vitale – Ravenna

Basilica di San Vitale, Via San Vitale, Ravenna, RA, Italia


The Basilica of San Vitale, in Ravenna, is one of the most important monuments of Early Christian art in Italy, especially for the splendour of its mosaics. Founded by Julianus Argentarius and commissioned by Bishop Ecclesius, the octagonal church was consecrated by Archbishop Maximian in 548 A.D.

The influence of oriental art, a typical feature of Ravenna buildings, plays a dominant role both for the architecture of the basilica, where elements of Eastern art merge with Western tradition, and for its mosaic decoration, that expresses the ideology and religious beliefs of the Justinian era. It is composed by a central, octagonal plan, topped by a cupola that rests on eight pilasters and arches. On entering the Basilica of San Vitale, the eyes are captured by the elevation and width of spaces, by the stunning mosaic decorations of the apse, including the mosaic of Justinianus I and Theodora, the imperial couple of Byzantium, and by the baroque frescoes of the cupola. A labyrinth is represented on the floor of the presbytery, right in front of the altar.

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Tarmac road, Accessible with large vehicles, Accessible by car
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Emilia-Romagna Film Commission
Viale Aldo Moro 38 — 40127 Bologna
Phone: +39 051 5278753
Email: filmcom@regione.emilia-romagna.it

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Region: Emilia-Romagna Type: Basilica / Cathedral / Collegiate Church