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Piazza dei Miracoli or del Duomo

The most famed monuments of Pisa worldwide concentrate in the Piazza de Miracoli which lies north of the centre and are on the list of UNESCO World Heritage.

The Duomo di Pisa’s construction (Picture 2) started in 1064 following the Romanesque style that also characterizes the other buildings around. Green and white marble front the outside walls. The cathedral became soon a model on which other Tuscan monuments were erected. Its dome was an innovation at the time as its design was elliptical and the first in this shape to be built on the continent. The dome was incorporated in the 14th century. Its splendid interior is 96m of length by 28m of height. Art and architecture create a superb monument. It is composed of two aisles with classical style columns of granite and an enormous mosaic apse which was executed by Cimabue in part. The pulpit is a fine piece made by Giovanni and Nicola Pisano who used Carrara marble to sculpt it in late Gothic blending with early Renaissance style. The pulpit is a well balanced pastiche of classical characters and Christian scenes. Hercules and John the Baptist meet in it. In the 16th century there was a fire which luckily did not affect the Christ in Majesty composed of mosaics. The patron saint’s body, San Ranieri, is mummified and lies in the cathedral. The bronze Portale di San Ranieri is the main entrance of the cathedral. They were executed in the 12th century and are themed on Jesus’ events of life with a stroke of Arab style. The three doors executed by the Scuola di Giambologna in the 16th century remain closed. The Conception, Birth, Passion and Crucifixion of Jesus represented on them are extraordinary.


The Baptistery, also following the Romanesque style, perfectly fits the environs. This big round monument has a dome composed of layers of different domes built in lead and tiles resting one on the other. Sculptures and a precious view, which can include a great shot of the tower, make it a big draw. The baptistery was begun by Diotisalvi in the 1100s, continued by Giovanni and Nicola Pisano later on and concluded in the 16th century creating a magnificent combination. Among its highlights are the Pisan Romanesque style of the arcades and the Gothic air of the upper dome. Inside, Nicola Pisano’s pulpit is a great point that catches the eye. The pulpit blends allegorical images, among which are a nude Hercules, and others based on Jesus’ life. Some of its characteristics resemble the sarcophagi’s in Camposanto. The floor features Islam style motifs and is worth taking time to admire. The Baptistery’s font is a lovely piece in octagonal shape. The guard that shows you in will also shout some words for everyone to feel how acoustically perfect its long reverberation is in the dome of this charming baptistery.


The cemetery called Camposanto Monumentale (Picture 3) is a cavernous edifice housing art, Greco-Roman sarcophagi and a few frescoes dating back to the medieval ages which could survive the damage of the WWII. One of these paintings is Triumph of Death., executed in the 14th century. . Here are buried many renowned figures born in Pisa. They lie in the Greco-Roman sarcophagi that surround the garden.