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San Carlo dei Lombardi

Little Church Opposite Orsanmichele

San Carlo dei Lombardi

This church was commissioned by the Signoria in 1349 and originally dedicated to St Anne, because her feast day was the day that the tyrannical Duke of Athens got the boot. The first architects were Neri di Fioraventi and Benci di Cionne, but it was completed by Francesco Talenti in 1404. Two centuries later it passed to Florence's Lombard confraternity and rededicated to St Charles Borromeo.

The church is small and fairly plain inside, but has as a focal point the recently restored altarpiece, Niccolo di Pietro Gerini's Entombment and Resurrection of Christ (c. 1390), set in transept arches. The frescoes in the lunettes, also recently restored, tell the story of St Charles, while the faded 14th-century scenes facing the congregation were only recently discovered.

The wooden polychrome Crucifix by Orcagna (c.1360) was a famous medieval miracle worker when it hung across the street in Orsanmichele opposite. At its foot is new bronze statue of a youthful St Padre Pio, one of Italy's most popular and newest saints, who wore gloves to hide the bleeding of the stigmata. One is kept in the reliquary under the Crucifixion.

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Via dei Calzaiuoli

Hours It's a busy, active church with frequent services, so usually open

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Medieval Art & Architecture

Churches, Cloisters and Convents

Text © Dana Facaros & Michael Pauls

Image by Sailko, GNU Creative Commons License