The cathedral, consecrated to San Giovanni Battista, the patron saint of Turin, is the only example of Renaissance architecture of the city. It was erected between 1491 and 1948, according to the will of the Cardinal Domenico della Rovere, based on the project by the Tuscan architect Meo del Caprina, built on three pre-existent churches. The main one in a northern position, was probably funded by the bishop Massimo I and consecrated to San Salvatore; the second, consecrated to San Giovanni Battista, contained the font and the third one was consecrated to "Santa Maria de Dompno". The three basilical buildings were then completed by the canons' houses and by a vast cemetery. Since 1490 the basilicas were pulled down to make room for a new cathedral. In 1498 the works for the cathedral finished and in 1513 was erected by pope Leone X to the level of metropolitan see. The building underwent various rearrangements through time: in 1665 the vault of the nave was rebuilt; in 1834 the interior was decorated with frescoes, later eliminated between 1927 and 1929 during the restorations undertook by bishop Gamba. The most significant intervention was the insertion of the Santa Sindone's chapel, based on a project by Guarino Guarini, in a super elevated position, instead of the original apse, and linked to the Palazzo Reale, which lies behind it. The cathedral, with a plan formed by one nave and two side aisles, has got a wide transept and, at the intersection of the wings, it is equipped with an octagonal dome of smaller size. At the sides of the side aisles there are six chapels along the right aisle and seven along the left one. Noteworthy it is the second chapel on the right, consecrated to San Crispino and San Crispiniano, painted by Defendente Ferrari, while the first chapel on the right contains the baptistery. The cathedral's façade, in white marble, with tympanum and three portals decorated with relieves of elegant Renaissance shape, perhaps derives from the coeval church of Santa Maria del Popolo in Rome. Outside, on the left side, detached by the building, the bell tower erects itself; made in bricks, it was donated by the bishop De Compeys just before the cathedral's reconstruction. The bells cell, based on a project by Filippo Juvarra, and began according to its drawings, was never completed.





Duomo Piazza San Giovanni
10122 Turin, Italy



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