crociferi street in Catania - monuments in Catania - street in Catania - visit Catania - interesting place in Catania - the church of san Benedetto in Catania - the Jesuit college in Catania

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Hotel  La Ville Catania

Crociferi Street

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Via Claudio Monteverdi, 15
Post code I-95131 Catania Sicily Italy
Tel. 0039 (0) 95 7465230 - Fax 0039 (0) 95 7465230

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Via Crociferi, a street marked by history, has kept intact the fascination of the Sicilian eighteenth century. Thousand religious cerimonies took place in this street during the feasts in the period of its greatest splendour. The austere and melancholy beauty of the claustral walls, the clear and sharp light of the courtyards, the thick mesh of rusty iron gratings have represented a source of  inspiration for many film directors influenced by the severe scenery of the Catanese Baroque: several films have made famous this street, among these we can remember II bell’Antonio (1960), a Brancati’s  play played by Marcello Mastroianni and  Claudia Cardinale. Also Storia di una Capinera (1994) by Zeffirelli, inspired by Verga’s novel, develops through the white stone of the churchies, of the cloisters and of the high iron fences.


The internal-connecting bridge of the Benedictine Monastery is the perfect background of via Crociferi. It became the symbol of that intricate centre of passions and contrasts that animated the period of the reconstruction of Catania after the earthquake of 1693. Among the important monuments of the street, there is on the left the church of San Benedetto built in the first years of the eighteenth century. The interior is made up of only one nave with the polychrome marbles floor and the silver high altar with precious stones. On the walls are the frescoes with Storie di San Benedetto. Above, over the modern class door, the magnificent golden choir opens with its grace and harmony. The Benedictine nuns still live in the Monastery where they have also opened a religious school. The nuns were sought-after because of their sweets made during the feasts; they cultivate also the art of singing. They are entrusted with the closing of the festivity of Sant’Agata, at dawn on the sixth February when, in front of the gate of the church, they intone a chant of praise that precedes the return of the coffin of the Saint to the Cathedral.


The church of San Francesco Borgia rises above a high staircase that links up the church itself ant the street level. Francesco Borgia was born in Spain (1510-1572), he was a relative of King Charles V, after a mystical crisis he  joined the Compagnia di Gesu’, Francesco Borgia was beatified by Pope Urbano VIII and he was canonized by Clemente  X.


It is made up of the church of San Francesco Borgia and a complex of buildings which today houses the Art institute. The central tribune balcony dominates over the sumptuous entrance. The complex has the classical structure of several Jesuits colleges with an area reserved for the religious community, one for the student and another one for the services. The courtyard strikes immediately the visitor because of the different styles used between the first and the second order of the cloister. This diversity is due to the long lasting works of construction for the scholarun area (from 1717 to 1740).


Catania Hotel La Ville - Via Monteverdi, 15 - Post code I-95131 - Catania Sicily Italy
Tel. 0039 (0) 95 7465230 - Fax 0039 (0) 95 7465230 - VAT 03634070878 -
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