Focus of this contribution is the Benedictine abbey of Montecassino and its reconstruction after the Second World War destruction. Founded by St Benedict in VI century, Montecassino Abbey is the cradle of Benedictine monastic order and also a center of spiritual, cultural and artistic irradiation for Italy and for whole Europe. Each historical period leaves a trace on the monument. In 11th century (1086) Abbot Desiderius was elected Pope Victor III and started significant transformations onf the Abbey, that became one of the most important architectural complexes of the Middle Age. The great transformations of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries deeply affected the architectural history of the abbey, transforming it into a great monument of the Renaissance and the Baroque and hiding the medieval structures by Desiderius. During the Second World War, on February 15, 1944, the Abbey was completely destroyed by a ferocious bombing; the following year the reconstruction began and was officially concluded on October 25, 1964 when the abbey basilica was reconsecrated for the fourth time since its foundation. In fact, the Abbey has been destroyed and rebuilt several times as is well described in its motto: Succisa virescit, that is “Once downed, it grows back stronger”. Through the analysis of iconographic and textual sources, we will try to retrace the history of this monument with particular reference to its last reconstruction. Today Montecassino is not only a religious symbol and an important architectural monument, but also a symbol of the barbarism of war.

MONTECASSINO ABBEY, DESTRUCTION AND RECONSTRUCTION ABADÍA DE MONTECASSINO, DESTRUCCIÓN Y RECONSTRUCCIÓN

Gallozzi, Arturo
;
Cigola, Michela
2024-01-01

Abstract

Focus of this contribution is the Benedictine abbey of Montecassino and its reconstruction after the Second World War destruction. Founded by St Benedict in VI century, Montecassino Abbey is the cradle of Benedictine monastic order and also a center of spiritual, cultural and artistic irradiation for Italy and for whole Europe. Each historical period leaves a trace on the monument. In 11th century (1086) Abbot Desiderius was elected Pope Victor III and started significant transformations onf the Abbey, that became one of the most important architectural complexes of the Middle Age. The great transformations of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries deeply affected the architectural history of the abbey, transforming it into a great monument of the Renaissance and the Baroque and hiding the medieval structures by Desiderius. During the Second World War, on February 15, 1944, the Abbey was completely destroyed by a ferocious bombing; the following year the reconstruction began and was officially concluded on October 25, 1964 when the abbey basilica was reconsecrated for the fourth time since its foundation. In fact, the Abbey has been destroyed and rebuilt several times as is well described in its motto: Succisa virescit, that is “Once downed, it grows back stronger”. Through the analysis of iconographic and textual sources, we will try to retrace the history of this monument with particular reference to its last reconstruction. Today Montecassino is not only a religious symbol and an important architectural monument, but also a symbol of the barbarism of war.
2024
978-84-09-58989-0
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11580/105983
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