Ravenna was a city of the Roman Empire in the V century and then of Byzantine until the 8th century. It has a wonderful collection of early Christian mosaics and monuments. Read on!
Ravenna, a city situated in the region of Emilia Romagna in Italy, is unique for its mosaics. Eight Christian monuments of Ravenna are inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage Site List. They are: The Neonian Baptistery (c. 430), the Mausoleum of Galla Placidia (c. 430), the Arian Baptistry (c. 500), the Archiepiscopal Chapel (c. 500), the Basilica of Sant’Apollinare Nuovo (c. 500), the Mausoleum of Theodoric (520), the Basilica of San Vitale (548) and Basilica of Sant’ Apollinare in Classe (549). With my trusty Lomo LC-A, I took some shots of this awesome place, in particular, the Byzantine church of Sant’Apollinare in Classe.
- Sant’Apollinare in Classe
The Byzantine Basilica of Sant’Apollinare in Classe is situated outside Ravenna, in the town of Classe, near the Adriatic Sea. This is the interior of the church:
- The big mosaic of Sant’Apollinare in Classe
The decoration of the apse is from the VI century, and represents a starry sky with a cross in the center with the face of Christ. At the sides, you can see two images of the great Prophet Elijah and Moses, and the lambs, which symbolize saints Peter, James, and John, remembering the Mount Tabor transfiguration. The green valley with plants and birds hosts the figure of the Patron of Ravenna, Saint Apollinaris.
Other than these unique Byzantine monuments, there are in Ravenna, two wonderful Romanic churches, San Francesco and Saint John the Evangelist.
- San Francesco in Ravenna
- Saint John
Another important monument is the tomb of the greatest Italian poet, Dante Alighieri, the author of the Divine Comedy.
If you’re in the seaside town of Rimini or Riccione, do not forget to visit Ravenna, which is only an hour’s drive!
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