“old sins cast shadows”
restoration, duplicate keys
unlocking truth light
Few original cathedral bronze doors in Italy have received as much international public attention (excluding the Vatican City’s holy doors, of course), as these doors featured above.
First brought onto the world stage by an article in Time Magazine (see below), these original bronze doors of Duomo di Benevento; Cattedrale Metropolitana di Santa Maria de Episcopio (Benevento Cathedral) suffered considerable damage from an Allied forces’ bomb blast during World War II (1943). The bronze doors were the victims of collateral damage when a bomb meant for a nearby bridge, missed its mark.
Benevento Cathedral, Campania Italy, was almost completely destroyed in the blast; however, its reconstruction began immediately after the dust settled. Finally completed in the 1960s the cathedral was restored to its original 8th-century style and 14th-century enhancements.
But not so these bronze doors. Their remains lay cloistered away in a sealed box inside the Cathedral’s library for decades.
Then, in 1990, having successfully negotiated the lengthy hoops instituted to erase the doors’ remains from public/scholarly memory, restoration expert, Sergio Angelucci obtained access to them.
Angelucci spent seven years of painstaking work, restoring the salvaged parts of the original 3.5 meters wide by 5 meters high (11.4 X 16 feet) doors adorned with 72 raised bronze reliefs (circa 1200 AD).
Finally, in 1997 the restored bronze doors were placed on permanent display inside the cathedral’s atrium under lights.
Closeup of the restored doors below. Their top segments feature the New Testament narrative of the life of Christ:
A few years later in 2012, a copy of the restored bronze doors was cast and installed as Benevento Cathedral’s main entrance (see photo below.)
Trivia and *bonus “door” for this week: Benevento was originally the most populous city in Southern Italy during the height of the Roman Empire. Its perhaps best-known monument, Trajan’s Arch was the Via Traiana doorway/extension to the historic Via Appia (Roman highway).
Below, the remarkably well-preserved, Trajan’s Arch, Benevento, Campania Italy (circa 114 – 117 AD):
Wider angle Benevento Cathedral, below:
Written for Dan Antion @ No Facilities – #ThursdayDoors