Italy, Cortona – Sightseeing
Etruscan tombs are the oldest thing you can see in this town. There are actually two of them Melone I and Melone II both sitauted at the foot of Cortona hill. Both tombs were discovered in the first half of the 20th century. Melone I features perfectly preserved burial items. Melone II is interesting for its "terraced" altar adorned by statues depicting fight between humans and mythological creatures. The tomb is of quite interesting size as it has 70 meters in diameter.
Should you enter Palazzo Pretorio, which is very close from Piazza della Republica, you will enjoy a museum focused on antiquity. Items on display focus on the Etruscans, Romans, and Egyptians. A bronze lamp from the 5th century BCE is the most precious exhibit here. Apart from this, you may see a bronze statue of Etruscan winged goddess, or Jupiter sending down flash. The section on ancient Egypt features, for instance, a 4 thousand year old burial boat and several sarcophagi.
Chiesa del Gesu is another museum which we recommend to visit. Former Jesuit church was built in the 15th and 16th centuries with renovation works in the 16th century. Nowadays, the church houses Diecose museum. Some important works of art on display here are the Annunciation by Fra Angelico, a renowned medieval artist and monk. His works may be seen mostly in Florence. Then note the Crucification and the Madonna. Both by Pietro Lorenzetti. Also, there is the 15th century reliquary made of gilded bronze, silver, and precious stones.
Cortona, home to 20 thousand, boasts own cathedral situated near from Piazza Signorelli. The cathedral is devoted to the Assumption of the Virgin Mary. Early-romanesque structure was mostly done by the architect Giualiano da Sangallo, the author of many important structures scattered across Tuscany. For instance, he built the Medici villas in Poggio or Caiaro.
Cathedral is split to three aisles lined with slender columns. Altars are very precisely carved out and made in mid-17th century. Moreover, inside there are many beautiful paintings..
Madonna del Calcinaio church is icing on the cake. This beautiful Renaissance-style church was built to shelter miraculous painting of the Virgin Mary.
Text: Maxim Kucer
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