The Duomo of Milan, ever since the very beginning of its unique project among the European cathedrals, has been designed not only as a place where to pray, but even a wonder to be admired in its infinite details, a place to live, walk around, stop and enjoy the views.
|This triumph of decoration is remarkable in many ways:
– For its sheer size, covering 12,000 square metres, it was the largest church in Christendom until St. Peter’s was built in Rome;
– It is a prayer in stone. for its intricacy of the decoration, extending to the most inaccessible parts of the roof structure.
– It has a total of 3,400 statues.
– It took around 600 years to build, ending in 1960 when the last bronze door was put into place.
|More than 60 meters above the ground, the walkways on the terraces, all carved in Candoglia marble, allow you to take a closer look at the splendid spires, the bas-reliefs and all the minute decorations such as pinnacles, tracery and flying buttresses.|
|On the tallest spire is the “Madonnina”, a four-metre, gold-leaf covered statue of Mary, which is now one of the symbols of Milan. An elevator carries up visitors wishing to avoid the 201-step climb. But be aware that there are still some stairs to be climbed at the top and the surface is rather uneven.|
|The Duomo Museum was opened in 1953, to house and exhibit the huge amount of material connected with its construction. Presently it houses a large collection of historical and artistic treasures, a precious record of the history of the Cathedral, including an extensive display of sculptures, stained glass, paintings, tapestries and embroideries, terracotta studies and large architectural specimens. The artworks cover a period spanning from the 15th to the 20th century.|