The heart of spirituality in Urbino
The primary place of Catholic worship in Urbino, the Cathedral dedicated to the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary was built in the early medieval period but was rebuilt in the 15th century at the order of Duke Federico da Montefeltro, designed by Francesco di Giorgio Martini. However, work was slow and the two earthquakes of 1781 and 1789 damaged the façade and caused the dome to collapse. These two disasters forced the citizens of Urbino to commission Camillo Morigia to construct the neoclassical façade, which, following the assistance of Giuseppe Valadier, now features seven statues of saints, including Saint Crescentino, the city’s patron saint.
The interior is spacious and solemn, divided into three naves. In the central nave is the high altar, featuring a large painting by Cristoforo Unterberger and bronzes by Camillo Rusconi. The most famous paintings decorating the church include: Claudio Ridolfi’s Translation of the Holy House of Loreto, Federico Barocci’s Martyrdom of Saint Sebastian and Raphael Motta’s Annunciation.
The old sacristies house the Diocesan Museum, where the church treasure is stored. Along the left side of the church is a portico from 1621 from which you can access the Oratory of the Grotto, located in the crypt. There, you can admire Giovanni Bandini’s sculpture of the Dead Christ and Madonna.