La Basilica e l’officina di Santa Maria Novella

Basilica of Santa Maria Novella

The great Dominican basilica where art, faith and science come together

Tue - Wed - Sat 11:00

Price

18€/Adults

9€/6-18 years

Free under 6 years old

Included in the Tour:
tour guide, radio transmitters, entrance ticket with reservation

Linear forms, harmony and balance are the characteristics that stand out when looking at the basilica from the outside.

The church has very ancient origins dating back to 1200 when the Dominicans arrived in Florence. Skilled preachers, they distinguished themselves in the fight against heretics, thanks above all to the work of Pietro da Verona, but also scholars of astronomy, mathematics and theology. Thanks to the commitment of the Dominican friars, Santa Maria Novella soon became a fundamental spiritual and cultural centre for the city.

The structure remained incomplete until 1400 when the famous artist Leon Battista Alberti, called by the Rucellai family, designed the Renaissance-style façade, inserting its classical forms into the pre-existing Gothic architecture. Once through the entrance, the interior of the basilica offers other fascinating surprises: Masaccio's Trinity, Giotto's crucifix and Brunelleschi's wooden crucifix, as well as Domenico Ghirlandaio's frescoes that give us a glimpse of life in 15th-century Florence. The visit is not limited to the church, but also continues in the museum, which includes: the green cloister (painted in "sugo d'erbe e terra verde" (herb sauce and green earth) by Masaccio and the chapter house, better known as the "cappellone degli Spagnoli" (Spanish chapel), frescoed with a refined cycle dedicated to the Dominican order and named after the Spanish wife of Grand Duke Cosimo I, Eleanor of Toledo. he structure remained unfinished until 1400 when the famous artist Leon Battista Alberti, called by the Rucellai family, designed the Renaissance-style façade, inserting its classical forms into the pre-existing Gothic architecture. Once through the entrance, the interior of the basilica offers other fascinating surprises: Masaccio's Trinity, Giotto's crucifix and Brunelleschi's wooden crucifix, as well as Domenico Ghirlandaio's frescoes that give us a glimpse of life in 15th-century Florence. The visit is not limited to the church, but also continues in the museum, which includes: the green cloister (painted in "sugo d'erbe e terra verde" (herb sauce and green earth) by Masaccio and the chapter house, better known as the "cappellone degli Spagnoli" (Spanish chapel), frescoed with a refined cycle dedicated to the Dominican order and named after the Spanish wife of Grand Duke Cosimo I, Eleonora di Toledo.

Once we have visited the church and the convent we will move to the pharmacy of S. Maria Novella, the oldest pharmacy in Europe, whose history goes hand in hand with that of the basilica. Since 1300 the Dominican friars started to produce perfumed waters, in particular rose water which was considered a remedy for plagues and infections and in 1500 the fame of the perfumes produced in the pharmacy of Santa Maria Novella crossed the Italian borders thanks to the queen of France, Caterina de' Medici. In 1612, the pharmacy became autonomous from the convent (although the direction remained in the hands of the Dominican friars) and its history of essences, elixirs and perfumes continues today.

Duration:

about 2 hours

What we will see:

S. Maria Novella complex, S. Maria Novella pharmaceutical perfume workshop.

Meeting point

S. Maria Novella square (in front of the entrance of the basilica View the map

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