The Cathedral 

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The Cathedral of Amalfi

It is architectonical complex made by two communicating churches, a crypt, a stair, an atrium, a church tower and a cloister called “Chiostro del Paradiso”.

The first core of this complex, is the northern church built during the IX century; in this church we find a wide nave with a narrow aisle, later used to connect the old church to the new one.
But already before the IX century Amalfi had a church as cathedral and this is documented in a letter, dated 596, wrote by Pope Gregorio Magno, to the rector of the churches in “Campania”, where the Pope rebuked “Pimerio”, bishop of the “Civitas Amalfitana”, because he did not live in Amalfi. Analysing the letter was discovered  that “Pimerio” was not the fist bishop of the town, but there were somebody else before his (“Pervenit ad nos Pimerium Amalfitanae Civitatis episcoporum” = “came to us  Pimerio from the bishops of  Amalfi town…”).

Then, already in  the VI century had to exist a cathedral in Amalfi, probably in paleo-cristian style and built in the middle of the “Civitas Castrum” (fortress town). The position was strategic, built at 20 meters over the sea-line, on a little knoll of volcanic punier-stone.

About this first church, we have just some columns and probably three arches modified during the XIV century in the “upper crypt of the Crib”.

During the IX century, the old church was rebuilt in two or three aisles. Today inside the church we find transennas, banisters and portals in marble with Byzantine  and Longobardian artistic elements, that came from the VIII and IX century the church was dedicated, since the beginning to the “Virgin”, while in the XVI century his name was changed in “Chiesa del Crocifisso”.

In 987, the duck of Amalfi “Mansone I” obtained by the Pope Giovanni XV, the elevation of the amalfi church at archiepiscopal seat. For this reason “Mansone I” built the new cathedral with three aisles near the old church, and because S.Andrew had already been the protector of Amalfi, the new temple was dedicated to him.

During the XIII century the archbishop “Matteo di Capua” and the cardinal of Amalfi “Pietro Capuano” widen the cathedral building the “Atrium” and the “Crypt”.

After the building the new Church, the old one gradually lost importance especially after the construction, in front of his entrance (1180), the tower Church.

Another important personage has been the archbishop “Filippo Augustariccio”, who completed the town church in 1276, building the bell-cell, rich in arches. The same archbishop , between 1266 and 1268 built the "Chiostro del Paradiso".

The biggest transformation which the Cathedral received, dated back to XVIII century, thanks to the Archbishop “Michele Bologna”: All columns were covered up with marble; a gold sequin ceiling  was realised in the middle aisle with paintings by “Andrea d’Aste and Giuseppe Castellano” that represent the S.Andrew Passion.

In the same period were also built the front of the church and the flight of steps (1728), that replaced the old one built in 1452.

But in the middle of the XIX century the front of the cathedral was damaged and, since during the works, were discovered the old Romanic front with little arches, columns and mosaics, it was decided to realise the façade  as the original , with Byzantine mosaics, that were made by Salviati from Venice and that represents Jesus Christ and his Apostles.

the Church Tower

Il Chiostro Paradiso

The Church