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The Basilica of Sant'Abbondio began its construction in 1063 and was consecrated in 1095 by Benedictines. A masterpiece of Romanesque architecture, it was built on the site of a paleo-Christian church dedicated to the Santissimi Apostoli and since 818 to San Abbondio, the fourth bishop of Como who died in 489. The church underwent numerous transformations and was brought back to its original state by a series of restorations which began at the beginning of the second half of the last century. It is a unique example of Romanesque architecture in Italy because of its direct dependence on models from beyond the Alps. The elegant facade, has five parts with three, central windows and arched frames. There are two bell towers, the left of which is a reconstruction of the tower in 1863, by Serafino Balestra as the original was destroyed in 1555. There are five naves inside and the walls have no decoration. The choir vault and the high, cylindrical pillars betray their Nordic origin and lend the structure an unusual vertical thrust. The apse part is illuminated by splendid frescoes depicting the life of Christ.
At the foot of the archaeological site of Castelseprio, Torba Monastery is an architectural chronicle of the steady passage of time. The monastery was originally built by the Romans in the 5th Century as a military stronghold against the Barbarians. A single tower and wall from this period still stand as a testament to the Romans knack for ingenious architectural forms. In later years, the complex was variously used by the Goths and Lombards for defensive purposes, each adding to the existing Roman structure. In the 8th Century, the fortress was handed over to a group of Benedictine nuns. They expanded the complex, adding a monastery and church, decorating the walls with simple frescoes. The monastery thrived for centuries until it was finally abandoned in 1436 and subsequently used as a farm. Despite its varied use across the ages, markers from each time period have survived, creating a visual representation of a long and eventful history. Of particular interest is a painting of three faceless nuns, ghostly forms cloaked in an aura of mystery that invite much speculation. The medieval monastery was included in UNESCO's list of World Heritage Site in 2011.
Como is a popular tourist destination in Italy located southwest of Lake Como. The city is famous for its churches, museums, parks, palaces and has a huge historical significance. The beautiful landscape of the city is frequently depicted in movies and the weather and cuisine of the area should definitely be experienced.
The Duomo di Como's construction began in 1396 and was completed in 1730, with the creation of the splendid dome by Filippo Juvarra. It was destroyed in a fire in 1935 and completely rebuilt with the help of the architect's original designs. This is one of the most interesting local buildings from the Renaissance era. The Cathedral was built above the old Church of Santa Maria Maggiore, which remained in use during the long construction work. The construction involved a long series of local modifications and renovations, including two spans of the Broletto which were knocked down, the Palazzo Pretorio was destroyed and the Church of San Giacomo was made smaller. The result is a splendid work, with a transept contained in the naves and circular apses in gothic tradition as well as numerous, Renaissance-inspired elements. The late gothic facade with Renaissance elements was designed by Fiorino da Bonta between 1455 and 1486 and boasts a notable, sculpture decoration which is mostly the work of Giovanni Rodari and his sons (15th-16th Century). The interior is a Latin cross shape divided into three naves with pillars and has notable works of art including tapestries from the 16th Century by Florentine and Flemish artists and splendid paintings by Bernardino Luini, Gaudenzio Ferrari and Tommaso Rodari.