Tourist Attraction in Ravenna: Museo Arcivescovile
The archiepiscopal museum of Ravenna is located in the Archbishop's Palace, in the historic center of the city. Founded in 1734, it is the first diocesan museum in Italy. In the early decades of the eighteenth century, the bishopric decided to demolish and then rebuild the medieval cathedral of Ravenna from scratch. The building housed many works of art belonging to the earlier Paleochristian cathedral, built when the capital of the Roman Empire had been moved from Milan. The mosaics, the epigraphs, the capitals and the tombstones were removed. Archbishop Maffeo Nicolò Farsetti (1727-1741) decided not to place them in the new church, but to collect them in a special place. After a few years of closure, the Museum was reopened in 2010 following a series of structural and plant interventions that have ensured a new exhibition structure. Some of these interventions have been realized also thanks to the funds of the Gioco del Lotto, according to what is regulated by the law 662/96. The exhibition path, consisting of four rooms, is very impressive, as it alternates historical environments, archaeological finds and works of art. Of considerable importance and interest: the ambo, from the church of Saints John and Paul; a headless Byzantine statue, perhaps depicting Justinian (6th century), in porphyry; the slab with the Easter calendar (VI century), in marble; the Cross of the Archbishop Agnello (VI century), in silver; the mosaics (12th century) of the apse of the ancient Ursian cathedral, including the image of the Madonna in prayer; textile fragments; a planet of the tenth century and another of the thirteenth century. Complete the visit the Roman tower called Salustra, where it is exposed: the Episcopal Chair of Massimiano (VI century), in ivory. Finally, the visit to the Museum offers an exciting surprise: the Archbishop's Chapel of Sant'Andrea, built as a private oratory by Peter II, bishop of Ravenna (494 and 519), and decorated with splendid mosaics from the beginning of the 5th century, including stand out: in the lunette Jesus Christ the victor who tramples a lion and a snake; in the vault Four angels holding up the monogram of Christ; Medallions with busts of saints alternate in the sub-arches. It is the only Episcopal chapel of Christian antiquity that has come down to us. In 1997 it was declared by UNESCO (along with other seven monuments of Ravenna) "World Heritage". The museum is equipped with a system of Braille information panels for the blind.