Skip to main content

Basilica of San Zeno, Verona (Where Gumbo was #293)

 

Gumbo was visiting one of the many fine cathedrals in Verona, this one named after the city's patron saint.  George G was the only one who recognized where we were from the puzzle clues offered -- congratulations to him!

03 Church of San Zeno, Verona (21)

Saint Zeno (about 300 to 380 AD) migrated from northern Africa and possibly was a black man.  He spent much of his life in Verona – first as monk, then as bishop.   He was beloved by the people of Verona and it seems served them well.

10 Church of San Zeno, Verona (17)

11 Church of San Zeno, Verona (18)

(Abbey adjoining the Basilica of San Zeno)

Verona has many very old buildings and historic churches, of which San Zeno is one of the more interesting.  A church has existed on this site since the 4th or 5th century to house the remains of San Zeno.  The building you visit today is a Romanesque church built in the 12th century after its predecessor suffered severe earthquake damage.  It's a 15 minute walk from the city's busy historic core to reach the Basilica and you'll find the church and area around it less busy and less crowded than many of the other places you're likely to visit in Verona.

04 Church of San Zeno, Verona (7)

05 Church of San Zeno, Verona (9)

06 Church of San Zeno, Verona (10)


The exterior or the church has several distinctive features, including a prominent 12th century bell tower standing 62 m and an adjoining abbey which has another (shorter) tower also constructed in the 12th century.  The church's exterior doors are guarded against evil by two lions and the entry is surrounded with Bible and medieval-themed relief carvings.

08 Church of San Zeno, Verona (12)

09 Church of San Zeno, Verona (13)

07 Church of San Zeno, Verona (11)

The tympanum (above) features San Zeno at the center surrounded by the people of Verona.

13 Church of San Zeno, Verona (27)

14 Church of San Zeno, Verona (29)

15 Church of San Zeno, Verona (33)

The most striking feature of the church is its beautiful bronze doors which you won't see until you enter (as they are now shielded by the wooden exterior doors you see in the above photos.  The bronze doors are decorated with 48 detailed panels, some of Bible stories, some highlighting scenes from St. Zeno's life, some of unknown significance.

17 Church of San Zeno, Verona (36)

(Panel probably detailing Saint Zeno) 

18 Church of San Zeno, Verona (38)

19 Church of San Zeno, Verona (39)

Inside the church  there is a high main nave and two side naves' the church is without a transcept or cross-like shape. 

31 Church of San Zeno, Verona (54)

30 Church of San Zeno, Verona (50)

There are many frescoes surviving from the 13th and 14th centuries, like this one of St. George slaying the dragon....

34 Church of San Zeno, Verona (64)

29 Church of San Zeno, Verona (49)


… a lovely well-preserved 14th century cross....

27 Church of San Zeno, Verona. 14th century Stazional Cross


…. an interesting baptismal font...

26 Church of San Zeno, Verona. 13th Century baptismal font

… and a porphyry basin dating to Roman times....

24 Church of San Zeno, Verona. Roman era porphyry basin

Stairs descend to the crypt where the remains of San Zeno are kept.  The crypt is rather spacious place and the oldest part of the church, dating to the 10th century.  The crypt is supported by 49 columns.  According to legend, Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliette were married in this crypt (Verona is full of attractions for this fictitious couple).

39 Church of San Zeno, Verona (59)

40 Church of San Zeno, Verona (57)
One of the most popular icons in Verona is that of a red marble statue of San Zeno called “San Zeno laughing”....

37 Church of San Zeno, Verona. Laughing San Zeno statue from the 13th century.

The presbytery sits above the crypt is accessible by stairs in the aisles.  The High Altar houses the sarcophagus of several bishops.

35 Church of San Zeno, Verona (78)

.36 Church of San Zeno, Verona (68)

Even if you're not a big fan of visiting churches, this one is quite interesting and very recommended to you when visiting Verona.

Attachments

Images (28)
  • Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Entry, Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Entry, Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Entry, Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Tynpanum, Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Entry, Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Entry, Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Abbey, Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Abbey, Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Bronze doors, Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Bronze doors, Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Bronze doors, Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Bronze doors, Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Bronze doors, Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Bronze doors, Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Church of San Zeno, Verona.  Roman era porphyry basin
  • Church of San Zeno, Verona.  13th Century baptismal font
  • Church of San Zeno, Verona.  14th century Stazional Cross
  • Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Church of San Zeno, Verona.  Laughing San Zeno statue from the 13th century.
  • Vault, Church of San Zeno, Verona
  • Vault, Church of San Zeno, Verona

Twitter: @DrFumblefinger

"We do not take a trip, a trip takes us".  John Steinbeck, from Travels with Charlie

Add Comment

Comments (0)

Post
×
×
×
×
Link copied to your clipboard.
×