Page:EB1911 - Volume 02.djvu/418

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The Campo Santo, an immense rectangular court 350 ft. long by 70 ft. wide, surrounded by a cloister 35 ft. wide, was begun in 1280; the details are refined, but the poverty in the design of the tracery with which the arcades were fitted in at a much later date detracts from its interest, which is now mainly concerned with the beautiful frescoes which decorate its walls.
As might have been expected, the cathedral of Pisa set the model not only for the restoration of existing churches but also for new ones, in Pisa itself and also at Lucca, Pistoia and Prato. In Pisa, the church of San Paolo a Ripa d’Arno was rebuilt about 1060, possibly by the architect of the cathedral; San Pietro-in-Vincoli and San Nicola date from the early years of the 12th century. At Lucca the churches of Santa Giulia, San Giusto, San Martino, San Michele, and the restored front of Santa Maria Fuorcivitas, are the principal examples in which the Pisan cathedral has suggested the design, and at Pistoia we can point to the cathedral, Sant’ Andrea, San Pietro and San Giovanni Fuorcivitas, the latter with a south wall decorated with three stages of blind arcades of great richness. The cathedral of Lucca was either restored or rebuilt at the beginning of the 14th century, and has a distinctly Gothic effect. The lower storey of the façade presents the unusual feature of an open porch across the whole front with three great archways. This porch with the three galleries above was added to the cathedral at the beginning of the 13th century.
Southern Romanesque.—The influences exerted in the early development of the Romanesque style in the south of Italy are much more complicated than in the north, since two new elements come into the field, the Norman and Saracenic. Of early work very little remains, owing to the general rebuilding in the 11th century; what is more remarkable, there is scarcely any trace of the result of the Byzantine occupation for so many centuries; the only exception being the church of San Gregorio at Bari, a small basilican structure in which the arches of the arcades separating the nave from the aisles are stilted like those of the Fondaco-dei-Turchi at Venice.
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Fig. 39.—Plan of S. Nicola at Bari.

One of the chief characteristics noticeable in the plan is the almost universal adoption of a transept projecting north and south slightly beyond the aisle walls, and in some cases raised over a crypt, as in the churches at Toscanella. Since, however, there is no choir bay, and the central apse opens direct into the transept, the plan is not that of the Latin cross. The most complete development of this arrangement is found in the cathedral and in the church of San Nicola at Bari (fig. 39); both being basilican churches with a triumphal arch opening into the transept,—in this respect similar to the churches of St Peter and St Paul at Rome, except that the transepts project only slightly, beyond the aisles. There is one peculiarity in both these churches, as also in that of the cathedral at Molfetta. East of the transept, and at the north and south sides, are towers, between which is carried a wall which hides the apse, the only indication of its existence being the round arched window which lights it. A similar arrangement exists in the cathedrals of Giovenazzo, Bitetto and Bitonto. The central bay of the transept of the cathedral at Bari is surmounted by an octagonal drum, the dome within which is carried on squinches; a similar dome was projected in San Nicola, but never built. In the cathedral at Bari, as also in San Nicola, the lofty nave is covered with a timber roof, and has an arcade on the ground storey and a fine triforium and clerestory windows above.
Externally these churches depend for their effect more on their fine masonry than on any decorative treatment; the blind arcades of the lower storey have very little projection, and the pilaster strips which in the Lombard churches break up the wall surface are not found here; the arched corbel table is freely employed but rarely the open gallery. There is one remarkable example in Bitonto cathedral; above the aisle chapels, and approached from the triforium, is an open gallery, the arches of which rest on widely projecting capitals sculptured with animals and foliage, half Lombardic and half Byzantine in style. The small shafts supporting these capitals are of infinite variety of design, with spirals, chevrons, fluting and vertical mouldings of many kinds.
The cathedral at Molfetta is in plan quite different from those already described, and consists of square bays with aisles, transept and apse, having domes over the nave and crossing. The Byzantine influence here comes in, but it is much more pronounced in La Cattolica at Stilo, a small church square on plan with four columns carrying the superstructure, which consists of a central and four domes on the angles. Other domed churches are those of the Immaculata at Trani; San Sabino, Canosa; and San Marco, Rossano. The lower part of the cathedral at Troja shows the direct influence of the cathedral at Pisa. The cathedral at Trani has the same plan as the churches at Bari, except that the earlier apses are not enclosed. The cathedral of Salerno retains still the fine atrium by Robert Guiscard in 1077. In the cathedrals of Acerenza, Aversa and Venosa, the French chevet was introduced towards the end of the 12th century.
In the magnificent octagonal tower which encloses the dome on the crossing in the cathedral of Caserta-Vecchia, we find the interlacing blind arcades of the Norman architecture in Sicily, as also in the cathedral at Amalfi. The porches, entrance doorways and windows being the chief decorative feature of the south Italian churches, were enriched with splendid sculptures. So were the pulpits of the cathedrals of Sessa, Ravello, Salerno and Troja, the rich mosaic inlays at Sessa, Ravello and Salerno according in design with the Cosmati work in Rome, though they possibly had an earlier origin in Sicily.
Sicilian Romanesque.—Although the earliest remains in Sicily date from the Norman occupation of the island, they are so permeated with Saracenic detail as to leave no doubt that the conqueror employed the native workmen, who for two centuries at all events had been building for the Mahommedans, and therefore, whether Arab or Greek, had been reproducing the same style as that found in Egypt or North Africa.
It is possible that, so far as the Norman palaces of the 12th century are concerned, they were based on those built under the Saracenic rule, but the requirements of a mosque and of a church are entirely different, and therefore in the earliest church existing (San Giovanni-dei-Leprosi, at Palermo, built by Robert Guiscard in A.D. 1071) we find a completely developed Christian structure, having nave, aisles and transepts, with a dome over the crossing and three apses. The next church, at Troina (1078), was similar on plan, but had three square wings at the east end instead of apses. The next two churches, La Martorana and San Cataldo (1129), at Palermo, followed the plan of the Greek church, with four columns carrying the superstructure and three domes over the nave bays carried on Saracenic squinches, similar to those in San Giovanni-dei-Leprosi. San Giovanni-degli-Eremiti (T-shaped on plan) has no aisles, but carries domes over the nave and three smaller domes on the transept. The most important feature found in all these churches is the pointed arch, of Saracenic origin imported from the East, which was employed for the nave, arcades, the crossing, and in the squinches carrying the domes. The blind arcades which decorate the walls of San Cataldo and of the Norman palaces—La Favara, the Torre della Ninfa, La Ziza and La Cuba (all in or near Palermo),—in two or three orders, and sometimes (as in the Favara palace) of great height, have all pointed arches and no impost mouldings or capitals. The distinguishing characteristic of these blind arcades (and the same is found in the open arcades) is the very slight projection of the outer order of arch.
The finest early example of Norman architecture in Sicily is the Cappella Palatina, at Palermo, consecrated in 1140, and attached to the palace. The plan consists of nave, aisles, transept and triple apse, the arches, all pointed and stilted, being carried on monolith columns of granite and marble alternately. The nave is covered over with a timber roof with stalactitic coves and coffered ceiling, richly decorated in colour and gilded, the borders of the panels bearing Arabic inscriptions in Cufic characters. Similar inscriptions exist on the upper part of the walls of the Cuba and Ziza palaces, proving that they were built by Saracenic workmen. The plans of the cathedrals of Palermo, Messina (destroyed 1908), Cefalu and Monreale are all similar, with nave and aisles separated by arcades, in which the arches are all pointed and stilted, transepts projecting north and south beyond the aisle walls, and square bays beyond, with apsidal terminations. That of Palermo has much suffered from restorations, but the cathedral of Monreale is in perfect condition. It was begun in 1176 and consecrated in 1182. The proportions of the arcade are much finer than in the Cappella Palatina, where the stilted arch was of the same height as the shaft of the columns, whereas here it is only half the height. The columns are all of granite with extremely fine capitals, some of which were taken from ancient buildings. All the roofs are in wood, with coffered ceilings richly decorated in gold and colour. The walls to a height of 22 ft. are all lined with slabs of marble with mosaic friezes, and all the surfaces of walls and arches are covered above with mosaics representing scenes from the Old and New Testaments, while in the apse at the east end a gigantic figure of Christ dominates the whole church. The same is found at Cefalu, where the mosaic decorations, however, are confined to the apses. Externally the walls are comparatively plain, the decoration being confined to the east end, where the three apses are covered with a series of blind intersecting arcades of pointed arches. This class of enrichment prevails throughout the great Sicilian churches, and extends sometimes to the smaller churches, as that of the Chiesa-dei-Vespri. Of the conventual buildings attached to the cathedral of Monreale, which occupied an immense site, there remain only the cloisters, about 140 ft. square, enclosed by an arcade with pointed arches carried on coupled columns, the shafts of which are elaborately carved and inlaid with