Brescia – the Old Cathedral

A Romanesque Rotonda

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The Old Cathedral of Brescia is a Romanesque church built on the site of a previous basilica, which in turn was built on Roman structures. The building underwent numerous expansions and structural modifications over the centuries, while retaining its original Romanesque structure. The Old Cathedral is one of the most important examples of round churches in Italy and a significant example of Lombard Romanesque architecture. The building contains numerous works of art of great value, such as the tomb of Bonino da Campione, the organ by Giangiacomo Antegnati, the marble sarcophagus of Berardo Maggi, and the cycle of paintings by Moretto and Romanino. The underground crypt dating back to the 6th century, but restored in the 8th century, is of great importance. In the 12th century, the new cathedral was completed, retaining only the underlying crypt of the previous basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore de Dom. The presbytery of the building has been expanded and decorated over the centuries, and the church underwent significant expansion at the end of the fifteenth and beginning of the sixteenth century.