Interior of the Syracuse Cathedral: Interior--page 2 (of 5 pages)

Temple of Athena, erected in 480 BCE by Gelon, forms the basis of the church built by Byzantine Christians. Later constructions include side chapels on the south, narthex and Baroque facade (1728-54)

Left and center: the central nave; right: front entrance

The nave exists where the original cella of the Greek temple had been situated. Arches were cut into the walls and the entrance was moved to the west. Continuing on both sides of the nave there is this Latin inscription, indicating that the church is the oldest Christian church in Europe: "Ecclesia syracusana prima divi Petri filia, et prima post Antiochenam Cristo dicata."

Left: nave looking toward the main altar; center and right: views of south side aisle


Left: main altar; center and right: oldest apse, end of north aisle

Continue to page 3--Exterior views.

Works Consulted or Quoted: Grady, Ellen. Sicily [Blue Guide]. New York: Norton, 2006.

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© 2010 Mary Ann Sullivan. I have photographed (on site), scanned, and manipulated all the images on these pages. Please feel free to use them for personal or educational purposes. They are not available for commercial purposes.