Tourist Attraction in Salerno: Chiesa della Santissima Annunziata
The church of the Annunziata of Salerno dates back to the middle of the 14th century. It rises near the destroyed western gate (Portacatena) of the historic center of Salerno in the Fornelle district. The building, built in 1627 with the name of Santissima Annunziata Nuova, went to replace the old church of the end of the 14th century, which in 1626 was destroyed by a flood. The latter was built to replace the Most Holy Annunziata Vecchia or Extra Moenia. The present church is the result of restorations of the early eighteenth century by Ferdinando Sanfelice, who designed the monumental bell tower that stood beside the disappeared Porta Catena. The bell tower is set on four overlapping architectural orders. Lesene with Ionic capitals and corinthes and columns at the corners contribute to a lightening of the structure. Monofore framed by a large frame open in the third order, while oculi inserted in a decorative pattern give brightness to the last, graceful by skirts ending in volutes. An exquisite cusp to the pinnacle connected to the volley bell tower finishes the elegant silhouette. The church has a facade on Via Portacatena, enriched by two niches shaped in marble, now without the statues provided by the designer Francesco Ragozzino, located at the sides of the portal overhanged by a bas-relief round representing the Annunciation; the door is embossed copper. The facade is horizontally divided by a marcapian strip and vertically by eight slopes: four at the bottom, smooth, with Ionic capitals; four in the upper, grooved, with Corinthian capitals. It closes all a triangular tympanum. The interior, covered with vaulted vaulted vaults, has a single aisle with apse and a hemispherical dome, without drum and lantern, decorated with a chest of drawers and rosettes. The sides are characterized by corrugated pilasters with Corinthian capitals surrounding the chapels. The main marble altar was made in the 18th century by Matteo Bottiglieri and by Filippo and Giovanni Ragozzino; the first are the two monumental angels placed at the head and the putti at the sides of the canteen. On the side altars there are two large paintings three meters high: A St. Francis of Paola is the work of Luigi Montesano and a San Biagio bishop, an unknown author. Of Pasquale Avallone are the rounds of the lateral chapels and the transept depicting the Prophets, made in 1913. Of particular importance was the 1880 Neo-Gothic organ of the organist John Battista De Lorenzi featuring three ivory keyboards and one pedal of twenty-seven pedals, originally planned for the Cathedral of Schio but arrived in 1888 in Salerno. The furniture of the sacristy was executed by the master slave Saviotto in 1712 by Pietro Vinaccia's design.