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Monumental Complex of San Pietro a Corte - Hypogeum and Palatine Chapel

Overview

The area on which the church of S. Pietro a Corte stands today was occupied by a thermal bath building in Roman times. Later, during the first centuries of the Christian era, it became a place of worship and burial. In the 8th century BC, Prince Arechi II moved the capital of Longobardia Minore from Benevento to Salerno, founding on this site a palatine chapel dedicated to Santi Pietro e Paolo. The foundation pillars of the religious structure date back to the frigidarium of the Roman baths, built in the Flavian-Traiana era, i.e. the 3rd century AD. The original height of the ancient building was about 13 metres and its vaults were barrel and cross vaults, it was also lit by large windows. In the period from the 5th to the 8th century AD, the building was later reused as a hall of worship, as shown by a variety of epigraphs. During the reign of Prince Arechi, the vaults were demolished and the thermal building was divided into two rooms separated by a dividing wall, the ceiling of the palatine chapel was built above it. The structure therefore presents four main layers: the Roman bath building, the early Christian ecclesia, the Longobard chapel and, finally, the medieval public building. The church also served as the seat of Parliament during the 13th century, and the Salerno Medical School's graduation ceremony was held there.

Monumental Complex of San Pietro a Corte - Hypogeum and Palatine Chapel
Larghetto S. Pietro a Corte, 8, 84121 Salerno SA, Italia
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