Church of San Giacomo (Ragusa)

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The Church of San Giacomo of Ragusa is one of the three churches of the Hyblaean Garden. Built in the 14th century with three naves, the earthquake of 1693 destroyed the two lateral naves. Inside there are several works of art, including a sixteenth-century crucifix and an eagle carved in pitchstone.

History and Architecture of the Church of San Giacomo in Ragusa

The construction of the church of San Giacomo in Ragusa probably dates back to the fourteenth century. It seems to have been built on the ruins of a temple dedicated to Lucina, the Roman goddess of childbirth. The building originally had three naves, but the earthquake of 1693 completely destroyed the side naves. Therefore, it was decided to rebuild it, keeping only the central nave. Instead, the current façade was rebuilt in 1902 and is divided into three orders. In the lower order, there is the entrance portal between two small columns with Corinthian capitals, while in the middle there is a window with a lunette. In the last order is the bell tower, surrounded by a balustrade interrupted by a sculpture of St. George the Knight, flanked by two statues representing St. James on the right and St. John the Evangelist on the left.

Church interior and artwork

The interior of the Church of San Giacomo in Ragusa is adorned with several paintings and works of art found in the side altars. On the left there is a sixteenth-century crucifix, an 1888 organ and a Gothic confessional. On the high altar there is an eagle carved in pitchstone, perhaps a symbol of the Norman domination of Sicily. The wooden ceiling, decorated by the artist Matteo Battaglia in 1754 and gilded by Giovanni Cannì in 1786, is also splendid. It depicts the four Evangelists and other saints, and above the choir there is a series of columns.

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