The Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore is a UNESCO Site in Florence Italy

Florence Cathedral, formally the Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore, “Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Flower“) is the  Duomo di Firenze. It was begun in 1296 in the Gothic style to a design of Arnolfo di Cambio and was structurally completed by 1436, with the dome designed by Filippo Brunelleschi. The facade is clad with marble panels in various shades of green and pink, bordered by white.

The Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Flower, illuminated at night, showing the large red brick dome, a decorated white marble nave, and a vertical, white marble bell tower to the left. Mountains are visible in the background and a dark, low-lying city in the foreground.

The architectural cathedral complex in Piazza del Duomo, includes the Baptistery  di San Giovanni and Giotto’s Campanile.

These three buildings are part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site covering the historic centre of Florence and are a major tourist attraction of Tuscany.  The three buildings are linked by distinctive vertical and horizontal bands of colored marble decorating the external walls.

The basilica is one of Italy’s largest churches, and until the development of new structural materials in the modern era, the dome was the largest in the world. It remains the largest brick dome ever constructed. Filippo Brunelleschi (1377-1446) presented plans for a wooden and brick model inspired by the Pantheon with a double-walled circular dome. His revolutionary engineering design solution involved a double walled cupola with horizontal reinforcements resting on a drum instead of the roof.

 

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