Basilica is largely the result of three different reconstructions,
which took place over a period of about 70 years: 1238-1310.
In St. Anthony's time there was the
little church Santa Maria Mater Domini, which
was then integrated into the Basilica and is now the
Chapel of the Black Madonna. Next to this, in 1229,
the Friary sprang up, which was probably founded by
St. Anthony himself.
Anthony died in 1231 in Arcella, in the north of the
city where a Clarisse monastery then stood, his body
- according his own wishes - was transported and buried
in the little church Santa Maria Mater Domini.
The construction of the first nucleus of the Basilica,
a Franciscan church with only a single nave and a short
transept, began in 1238; two lateral naves were added
and it was eventually transformed into the amazing structure
that we admire today.
begin with the central nave. You can notice straightaway
that the architecture is quite Gothic, and that there
are two distinct parts: the nave (where we are now)
and the apse beyond the transept. This is not only because
the latter is completely frescoed but also because there
is a different Gothic style.
nave area appears quite spacious marked by two solemn
arches on either side. Above these, on both the right
and left there is a balcony, which accompanies the central
nave, entering the transept.
The numerous funeral monuments are as equally striking
as the remnants of decorations and paintings that cover
pillars and other spaces and mostly originate from the
XV-XVII centuries. Nowadays, we often prefer to see
churches cleaned up of this encrustation of the past.
However, we must not undervalue the artistic value of
these monuments nor the fact that they represent an
interesting cross-section of the social and cultural
life of the city and region. Still, these funeral monuments
do not interest the majority of visitors.
leaving the central nave, please observe the great fresco
by Pietro Annigoni, finished in 1985 on the counter
facade, depicting St. Anthony preaching from the
walnut tree. This episode from his life took place
in Camposampiero (Padua) where the Saint, just before
his death, spent a brief period of rest and reflection
(from the second half of May to 13 June 1231).
Saint indicated the Gospel as a source of life and light
to the people (simple or ill, indifferent or curious;
an element of counterpoint can be found in the three
children) and to his friars (Blessed Luca Belludi, St.
Anthony's successor, is at the foot of the ladder).
Virgin of the Pillar
the first column of the left-hand nave you can admire
the Virgin of the Pillar. This fresco was painted
slightly after the middle of the fourteenth century
by Stefano da Ferrara.
Ignore the angels above and the two apostles at the
side; they were added later. Likewise, the brilliant
diadems on the heads of the Virgin and Jesus probably
originate from the seventeenth century.
the first altar on the left there is the altarpiece
of Maximilian Kolbe, also painted by Pietro Annigoni
Chapel of the Most Holy Sacrament
is the first chapel of the right-hand nave. The Eucharist
is kept here. It used to be called the Gattamelata
Chapel, because the family of the leader Erasmo
da Narni (nicknamed Gattamelata, 'Honeyed Cat' in 1443)
wanted it to be the resting place for his tomb, which
you can see on the left-hand wall; on the right-hand
wall is his son Giannantonio's tomb (+ 1456).
Gothic style chapel was completed in 1458. It has a
square shape, with four columns in the corners and a
cross-vaulted ceiling. The rest has undergone various
changes over the centuries. The latest, including the
apse behind the altar, took place over the period 1927-1936
and is the work of Lodovico Pogliaghi, a versatile artist
Chapel of St. James
the right-hand nave, you reach the transept which ends
in the Chapel of St. James, paid for by Bonifacio
Lupi, the Marquis of Soragna (Parma) who held important
diplomatic and military responsibilities at the court
of the Carraresi family of Padua.
elegant and spacious Gothic area was completed in the
1370s by one of the most important Venetian sculptors
and architects of the day, Andriolo de Santi. The chapel's
entrance has five tri-lobed arches.
chapel's entrance has five tri-lobed arches.
visitor is immediately enveloped by the warm environment
inspired by the marble and frescoes, covering every
surface of the chapel and whose restoration was finished
in 2000. One's gaze immediately gravitates towards the
dramatic and majestic Crucifixion, a masterpiece
by Altichiero da Zevio (Verona) the greatest Italian
painter from the second half of the fourteenth century
who finished this work in the 1370s, before the chapel
Story of St. James. - The eight windows of the chapel
and the partition present a few moments of the life
of St. James, taken from the Legenda anctorum o
aurea by Jacopo da Varazze (1255?). This was a religious
text which was widely disseminated for devotional purposes
and concerned itself with traditions and legends which
influenced many artists.
apostle is St James the Great (St. John's brother) whose
shrine is Santiago de Compostella (Galizia/Spain), one
of the most important destinations of a Christian pilgrimage,
especially in the X-XV centuries. The artist is Altichiero
da Zevio, with the collaboration of Jacopo Avanzi,
from Bologna, whose hand in the fresco is not always
towards the ambulatory there is an exit on the
right which leads to the Magnolia Courtyard and
further ahead, the entrance to the Sacristy;
on the left however, there is the Presbytery/choir stalls
area. After the Sacristy you come to the first chapel
of the ambulatory.
Chapel of the Benedictions
In this chapel, the faithful like to bless even their
personal items, as a long-lasting and visible remembrance
of the grace received in the Basilica. The frescoes
of Pietro Annigoni also attract our attention, as
they were carried out closely following a theme
that is very apparent: the tragedy of sin.
to the fish, on the left (1981): an episode which
had the most ancient of origins, Actus beati Francisci
et sociorum eius (1327-40), and took place in Rimini
in 1223, at the mouth of the Marecchia River.
Saint, seeing that the heretics and Cathartists were
hostile to his preaching, went to speak to the fish,
which flocked towards the Saint, darting out of the
waves to listen. The artist portrays the Saint resting
on a huge boulder (an allusion to Christ) mediator of
a faith "represented" by the lively fish rushing to
their Creator. Next to him there is a frightened companion
of the faith who is hesitantly watching the arriving
fish. Aside from the Saint, It is the overall view that
is impressive: people and creatures, everyone appears
unsettled and about to fall into ruin. This is what
happens to a world that rejects God.
Saint faces the tyrant Ezzelino da Romano (1982).
According to the account of the Paduan notary Rolandino
(1262) the event narrated in the fresco occurred just
before the Saint retired to the hermitage of Camposampiero,
therefore in May 1231. Implored by the friends
of Rizzardo di San Bonifacio (Verona) imprisoned with
others from the Ghibelline sect, St. Anthony turns
to Ezzelino III da Romano, to obtain their release.
The outcome of the visit is negative. The artist portrays
the final phase of the meeting: a refusal with no second
obstinance is portrayed through the determined gesture
of the hands. Behind him, the grim advisor, pictured
in his true identity: the devil, the deceiver.
is not very relaxed: he reaches out towards the Saint
with a frown on his face trying to diffidently scrutinise
the source of such simplicity and courage. Anthony has
the Gospel in his hand, but it is closed for the tyrant.
resigned, feels compassion for the tyrant who is a prisoner
of himself. Behind, there are the shadows of the prisoners,
pushed on by the guards, each indistinguishable from
Crucifixion (1983). - The proportions, the detachment,
the emphasis conveyed by the false wall on which the
Crucifix is portrayed elicits an immediate and strong
reaction. The eye anxiously follows the curved and bloody
legs of Christ. The chest strains downwards and the
abdomen is swollen as often happened to those who met
their death in this way. The arms are brutally strained
and the body appears about to collapse. The face is
tortured. The oppressive surrounding atmosphere is furrowed
by lightening: the only sign of the echo in nature of
this dramatic event. Above, in the centre, a scarlet
light, of love and blood, exalts and reveals the meaning
of the suffering of Christ, who seems to whisper: "My
God, my God, why have You abandoned me?".
the chapel, let us look up, to the high, serene vaults
of the apse of the Basilica and soothe our souls. If
we follow the ambulatory, we pass on our right the American
Chapel or the Chapel of St. Rose of Lima (1586-1617)
the Patron Saint of America, the Philippines and the
West Indies; and the Germanic Chapel or Chapel of
St. Boniface (673-755), the great evangelist of
Germany; and finally the Chapel of St. Stephen,
the first Christian martyr, containing clear and skilled
frescoes by the Italian Ludovico Seitz (1907), a productive
painter who belonged to the "Nazarenes" movement.
continue, remaining on the right-hand side, we reach
the centre of the ambulatory leading to the Treasury
Chapel (Chapel of the Relics).
chapel, built in 1691, a Baroque work by Parodi,
one of Bernini's pupils occupies a distinct space in
the Basilica, without ruining its Gothic coherence.
The architecture transforms into triumph before our
very eyes, beginning with the balustrade and six marble
statues (also by Parodi).
the balustrade, there is the walkway that allows visitors
to admire the "treasure" of the Basilica, hence the
name of the Chapel. The reliquaries are collected in
three distinct niches and accompanied below by pairs
entire scene is crowned by celebrating angels (in stucco
work by Pietro Roncaioli da Lugano) which lead up to
the glory of St. Anthony (in marble, by Parodi).
There are further decorations in the drum of the cupola
(by Roncaioli) and in the canopy (from the beginning
of the last century).
Records of the Saint (in front
of the balustrade). Before climbing up to the niches,
we can look at objects connected with the Saint, which
have been set in this area and on the walls facing the
January 1981, on the occasion of the 750th anniversary
of the death of Saint Anthony, and with the intention
of specifying the exact state of St. Anthony's mortal
remains, St. Anthony's tomb was opened for the second
time in history for the "religious pontifical commission"
and a "scientific/technical commission". (See
the recognition pages) Inside was found:
large pinewood box, wrapped in four linen sheets
and, over these, two highly decorated and embroidered
the large box, a second smaller box (of pine)
with two different-sized compartments and a cord with
three seals running along the length of the lid; inside
three bundles wrapped in crimson red silk and finely
embroidered (probably belonging to a cope) and with
a precious appliqué trim and each labelled with a parchment
indicating the contents which were:
entire skeleton, apart from the jaw, left forearm
and other minor parts;
remains, mostly reduced to dust;
tunic, made from ash-coloured wool.
the large box and within the altar which housed it
plaque with the date of the Saint’s death,
his canonisation and of the transfer of his mortal
remains from the little church of Santa Maria Mater
Domini to the new Basilica (8 April 1263)
of little rings (10 white and 50 black) from a necklace
understand all this, we need to think back to the year
1263. The second phase of construction of the Basilica
was completed, and on the occasion of the “general chapter”
which gathered Franciscans together in Padua with the
general secretary of the Order of St. Bonaventure, the
tomb of the Saint was transferred from the little church
of Santa Maria Mater Domini to the centre of the Basilica,
under the present cone-shaped cupola (in front of the
that occasion the coffin containing the Saint’s remains
was opened for the first time, above all to remove some
relics to offer for the devotion of the faithful in
It was a great surprise to see his tongue incorrupt.
It was then that St. Bonaventure, with his heart full
of admiration, prayed aloud:
O blessed tongue, you have always
praised the Lord and led others to praise him! Now we
can clearly see how great indeed have been your merits
was then decided to separately conserve the Saint’s
tongue, jaw, left forearm and a few other minor relics.
The rest was wrapped up in the crimson red bundles mentioned
above, and placed in a smaller box which, in turn was
placed in a larger box.
of 1981 provided the opportunity to make an examination
of the historical, technical, artistic, anthropological
and medical character of all the material discovered.
The Saint’s skeleton was accordingly reconstructed and
placed on a small cushion in a crystal case, within which
were placed two glass caskets containing the other remains.
The crystal case was then locked away in an oak casket
and placed back into the tomb.
the Treasury Chapel there is: the Saint’s tunic, the
two wooden boxes, the cord and two seals, the three
crimson red cloths reconstructed as a cope, the two
large decorated drapes, the plaque, some small coins
and the rings. All of which can be devoutly observed.
the left flight of steps there are three niches which
contain relics of St. Anthony and other Saints, and
above, gifts donated in recognition or as signs of devotion
by wealthy pilgrims who have visited the Patron Saint
of Padua. We must instead focus on the most prestigious
relics of St. Anthony which are in the central niche.
The Saint’s tongue (in the centre). Do not expect
it to be a tongue which is bright red in colour. It
is still however an inexplicable fact, given that it
is a very fragile part of the body that is usually among
the first parts to disintegrate after death. More than
770 years have passed since St. Anthony died and this
tongue is a perennial miracle, unique in history
and full of religious significance, a seal marking
the work of re-evangelisation of society carried out
by the Saint.
A gilded silver masterpiece, a work
by Giuliano da Firenze (1434-36) proudly contains the
relic of the jaw (above). More precisely, the
lower jaw, contained in a case shaped like a bust, with
a halo and crystal glass where the face should be. It
was commissioned in 1349 by Cardinal Guy
de Boulogne-sur-Mer, who experienced one of the
Saint’s miracles: He brought it to Padua the following
year, to solemnly organise the placing
of the jaw into this reliquary. The cartilage
of the larynx (below). This is still incorrupt.
These are the parts of the body used in phonation, that
is to say, in speech, and thus attracted attention straightaway,
although not considered inexplicable like the tongue
during the recent recognition in 1981. It was still
decided to place it with the Saint’s tongue. The reliquary
is the work of Carlo Balljana from Treviso.
Exiting the Chapel of Treasure, on the right
there are the following chapels: the Polish Chapel or
Chapel of St. Stanislaus (+ 1079), priest and martyr
and patron Saint of Poland, then the Austro-Hungarian
Chapel or Chapel of St. Leopold (1075-1136), margrave
and Patron Saint of Austria; then the Chapel of St.
Francis; and finally the Chapel of St. Joseph.
chapel of the black Madonna
ahead, on the right-hand side, there is the Chapel
of the Black Virgin.
Here we find ourselves in what remains of the early
church of St. Maria Mater Domini (end of XII-beginning
XIII) contained within Basilica. St. Anthony certainly
prayed here and his dying wish was that he be buried
here. His remains stayed here until 1263.
The statue of the Black Madonna which dominated
the altar was completed in 1396 by Rainaldino
di Puy-l'Evéque, a Gascon artist. Paduans have called
it the “Black Madonna” because of her dark complexion,
the name also expresses their loving relationship with
the side of the chapel there is the Chapel of Blessed
Luca Belludi, dedicated also to St. Philip and St.
James the Younger, apostles of St. Anthony. It was added
to the Basilica at the end of the fourteenth century,
and named after Blessed Luke, St. Anthony’s companion
and successor, because his tomb is in the altar. Paduan
students often come here, placing their trust in the
blessed one’s intercession for the difficult task of
preparing for their exams.
chapel was from almost the beginning however dedicated
also to St. Philip and St. James The frescoes by
the Florentine Giusto de' Menabuoi are very interesting,
and originate from the second half of the fourteenth
century (1382). Ruined by the humidity, they have recently
been restored and brought back to their former splendour,
allowing us to appreciate their considerable artistic
raised sarcophagus is empty these days. This altar/tomb
dates from the thirteenth century and tradition has
it that from 1263 to 1310 it was the tomb of St. Anthony,
when it was located in the Presbytery of the Basilica,
under the conical cupola.
chapel of the tomb of Saint Anthony
Saint’s tomb has been called the “Ark” from the
very beginning. The Saint’s tomb is in the altar
in this chapel, at head height. Originally it was located
(from 1231 to 1263) in the little chapel of St. Maria
Mater Domini (today the Chapel of the Black Madonna)
and from 1263 to 1310 in the centre of the Basilica,
in the Presbytery, under the present conical cupola.
The location of the tomb from 1310 to 1350 is uncertain,
however, it might have been in its current position.
It has remained in this chapel from 1350.
Until the beginning of the sixteenth century, the style
which has decorated the chapel has always been Gothic,
with frescoes by Stefano da Ferrara, the same artist
who painted the Virgin of the Pillar.
current decoration was completed in the sixteenth
century and is quite harmonious from an architectural
and sculptural point of view. It has been attributed
to Tullio Lombardo.
altar is rather invasive, but the artist Tiziano
Aspetti (who created it at the end of the sixteenth
century) was conditioned by the height of the preceding
altar which was difficult to modify. The statues
on the altar (St. Anthony between St. Bonaventure and
St. Louis of Anjou) are by the same artist, while
other bronze workers made the angels, the small gate
and the two small branched candlesticks.
ones supported by marble angels are sixteenth century
creations by Filippo Parodi.
reliefs on the walls behind the tomb. - with a bit
respect and good manners, it is possible to combine, for
whoever may be interested, a pause for prayer and reflection
at the Saint’s tomb with brief glance at the nine high
reliefs found in the chapel.
St. Anthony receiving the Franciscan habit. A work
by Antonio Minello (1517).
The jealous husband, whose wife, beaten out of jealousy,
is healed by the Saint. The work, begun by Giovanni
Rubino (known as il Dentone), was completed by Silvio
The young man resurrected by the Saint. The Saint,
miraculously transported to Portugal, resurrects a young
man so that he can reveal his assassin in order to exonerate
Anthony’s father, in whose garden the young man’s body
was hidden. Begun by Danese Cattaneo, it was
completed by Girolamo Campagna (1573).
The resurrected young girl. A young girl, having
drowned is resuscitated by the Saint, who does not appear
in this representation, even if you can see his Basilica
above. The work is by Jacopo Sansovino (1563).
It is a well-balanced and powerful representation.
The resuscitated child. The child is Anthony’s nephew.
This is a work by Antonio Minello, with retouches
by Sansovino (1536).
The heart of the deceased usurer is not found where
it should be, but in his coffer, as the Saint had declared.
This is by Tullio Lombardo (1525).
St. Anthony reattaches the foot of a young man,
who out of desperation had cut it off after kicking
his mother. The work of Tullio Lombardo (1504).
The glass which remains intact, having been thrown
to the ground as a challenge by someone who did not
believe in the preaching or wonders worked by St. Anthony.
Begun by Giovanni Maria Mosca, it was completed
by Paolo Stella (1529).
9. St. Anthony makes a newborn baby
speak, to attest to the honesty of his mother, unjustly
suspected by her jealous husband. The work of Antonio
Lombardo (1505), Tullio’s brother.
visit this part of the Basilica you need to speak to
one of the guards.
decoration of the apse of the Basilica. The pictorial
decoration which covers the apse of the Basilica
was created by the Bolognese artist Achille Casanova
and his assistants in 1903 and in 1939,
and follows a great iconografical project which is not
necessary to explain here. The work has been highly
criticised, because it was too scholastic and interferes
with the pure architectural lines, which it should have
simply and discreetly followed. But it is limiting to
focus on this one aspect only. This work, in fact, has
a certain grandiosity and is certainly unique. It inspires
awe when the Basilica is illuminated.
the choir: this is the term for the area behind
the main altar or the stalls in which the religious
sit to celebrate the “Liturgy of the hours”, which
is the public prayer of the Church, when the friars
pray for those who have asked for prayers. Until 1649
the choir was in front of the present altar, in the
presbytery. This was its position in the majority of
churches which had a choir until the Council of Trent,
and can still be seen in that position in Anglican churches;
the choir was then gradually moved behind the altar
so that the faithful could see the altar better and
follow the liturgy more closely. The actual stalls
of the Basilica’s choir date back to the latter part
of the eighteenth century. The previous stalls,
a Gothic masterpiece by brothers Lorenzo and Cristoforo
Canozzi and their workshop (1462-69), were destroyed
by fire in 1749
Pashcal candelabra: masterpiece by Andrea Briosco.
On the North of the altar there is a superb paschal
candelabra cast in bronze by Andrea Briosco, known as
“il Riccio”, which was completed in 1515. It
is one of the greatest candle-holders in the in the
Western Christian Empire, not only because of its dimensions
(3.92m high plus the 1.44m marble base), but owing to
its complexity and high level of workmanship.
The Donatello grouping: a marvellous synthesis
of life and faith. - Let us conclude the visit to the
Basilica, taking a look at some of the thirty works
by the great Florentine sculptor Donatello. These
were created in Padua, from 1444 to 1450,
and represent one of the most fundamental events
of the Renaissance and of all Art History, not just
Deposition. - This work (found behind the main
altar) made in stone from Nanto (Colli Berici, Vicenza).
Four disciples wracked with pain, laying the naked,
motionless body of Christ into the tomb. Behind them,
the torment of the women is portrayed. Mary Magdalene
is in the middle: more than any of the other 43 women,
she expresses the horror of being left alone to think
about her sin. According to Christian revelation, sin
is the reason for death.
miracle of the mule (above left, behind the altar).
The artist sets this famous episode in the magnificence
of a Basilica, in front of an altar. Not only scholars
marvel constantly at the magic of Donatello who was
able to give an unexpected sensation of depth and volume
to shallow spaces, using lines, decorations and different
coloured materials. One’s gaze descends the lateral
vaults, travels across the transversal lines, and like
a wave takes in the two groups of men and pushes them
towards the altar. Here, light penetrates creating a
feeling of the serene peace of presence of the Lord:
it is revealed partly by the sanctity and faith of Anthony
on one side and partly by the silent voice of nature.
The discovery of the presence of God is reflected in
the individual expressions of those present: an agitated
and anxious humanity before God, a splintering of reactions...
like all great geniuses, transcends the culture of his
time and appears contemporary. As you can see, the very
low relief reduces the volume of bodies, which are flattened
and expanded with a painting-like quality. This technique,
of which Donatello is a master, is named after the Tuscan
terminology “stiacciato”, which means “squashed”.
On the right of the opposite side of the altar, the
artist portrays St. Anthony who makes a newborn baby
speak (to attest to the honesty of his mother unjustly
suspected by her jealous husband). On the bottom right:
the ox (winged and with a halo, a symbol of Saint Luke,
the evangelist); on the right: a lion (a symbol of St.
Main Altar was completed in 1895 by Camillo
Boito (brother of the musician Arrigo) and is the
last of the various altars built in the Basilica over
the centuries. These variations are due to changing
sensibilities and liturgical procedures. All of Donatello’s
masterpieces, which were once spread about the Basilica,
are gathered together here. Here they are described
one by one.
little angels and the sorrow of Christ. Below, along
the front and side panels there are 10 very original
angels playing instruments (on ten panels) and 4
singing angels (on two panels, at the side of the
Dead Christ). Although these are quite clumsy,
like in other artistic representations of children at
the time, these putto sculptures kindle an immediate
fondness for their childish commitment to their musical
the centre is the Sorrow of the Dead Christ :
a tender portrayal.
The little Tabernacle door depicts
Christ dead in his tomb (dated 1496: sculptor unknown).
At the sides: on the left, St. Anthony reattaches the
foot of a young man, (who, out of desperation, had cut
it off after kicking his mother); on the right, The
usurer’s heart (which was not found in his chest by
the surgeon but in his coffers).
Giustina and St. Daniel. - Higher up, above
the altar, on the left: St. Giustina (a
young Paduan martyr, her cult began in the V century;
the great Basilica in nearby Prato della Valle
is dedicated to her); on the right, St. Daniel
(a young Paduan deacon, martyred at the beginning
of the IV century and whose remains are in the
Cathedral of Padua).
altar extends and has two lower wings on which
is an angel (symbol of St. Matthew) on
the left below, and, St. Louis above; on
the right: below, an eagle (symbol of St.
John the evangelist) and above, St. Prosdocimo.
Louis d'Anjou and St. Prosdocimo. St. Louis
(127-497), son of Charles d'Anjou II, King of Naples:
he refused the crown and before accepting to be
the bishop of Toulouse, he wanted to experience
being a Franciscan. His decision had a huge impact
on others. He died at 23 years old.
Prosdocimo (latter half of III century) founder
and first bishop of the city of Padua. His old
age has been confirmed by the recent recognition
of his bones that rest in the Basilica of St.
Francis and St. Anthony. - At the Virgin Mary’s
side, Donatello portrayed St. Francis and St.
Anthony, major players in the religious and cultural
life of the thirteenth century.
Virgin and Child. This is the central theme
of Donatello’s symphony. Mary is very young, and
though unfinished in some parts, the statue has
the fresh quality of a new creation. We can note
great beauty united with ever-present painful
thoughts. It brings to mind ancient statues, but
it is also animated by the motion of life and
The Crucifix - Behind the statue of
the Virgin, the crucifix rises up and dominates
the space. As the proportions reveal, Donatello
didn’t create this for the altar, but instead
meant it to be placed in the middle of the church.
It is seen from below. The nail swells and puckers
the veins which cross the right foot. The eye
slowly follows in pain the legs that are curved
and bent to the right, but are not yet stiff.
The abdomen and chest are striking, especially
if struck by the light, since they allow the
underlying skeleton to be seen. Veins and the
tendons that still pulse with life run down
the arms. The face is that of a hero which mixes
beauty and courage.
sacristy is preceded by an atrium full of valuable
frescoes. They are attributed to a follower of Girolamo
Tessari (known as Dal Santo). They portray two miracles:
St. Anthony praying to the fish and the glass
thrown to the ground which remains intact (both
In the lunette above the door, there is a beautiful
fresco from the second half of the thirteenth century:
the Virgin and Child between St. Francis and St. Anthony.
In the bright
sacristy, we can admire the frescoes by Pietro Liberi
which celebrate, with inspired and unbridled imagination,
the glory of St. Anthony (1665).
On the right, above the entrance, the wall is covered
by a large wall cabinet, a work by Bartolomeo Bellano
(1469-1472). The ten marquetry panels which cover
it are by Lorenzo Canozzi (1474-1477);
they represent (from the left): Saints Bernardino and
Jerome, Francis and Anthony, Louis d'Anjou and Bonaventure;
on the panels below the Saints, a still life of books
and liturgical objects. On the other wall, there is
an oil painting on canvas by Francesco Suman (1847).
Beyond the little room, there is the airy chapter
hall (the official meetings of friars are called
chapters) originally decorated with a fresco cycle attributed
to Giotto. Unfortunately, few fragments remain.