Parish church of San Pantaleone a Elici

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The parish church of San Pantaleone a Elici - reconstructed in the XII century upon an Early Medieval building - is located on a ridge, gradually descending towards the sea and dividing the Freddana and Lucense valleys from the marshes of Massaciuccoli. In a dominant position above the plain of Massarosa, the parish church represents a significant example of pre-Romanesque architecture in the area of Lucca.

 

In the XII century the parish church of San Pantaleone was nearly completely rebuilt upon the Early Medieval construction; the latter is mentioned in sources, though only scanty remains of its walls can be seen today on the north side.The new church was built according to a Latin cross plan, divided in three aisles and provided with a semicircular apse. In 1470 a new high altar was built and a marble triptych was placed upon it. The most relevant transformations, of a mainly structural nature, were carried out in 1725, as we know from an inscription in the open gallery to the north of the church: the monofore and the bifora on the façade were replaced by large rectangular windows and an arched entrance was built in place of an earlier one on the north side; besides, the interior was covered with a vaulted ceiling and the pillars and walls were entirely plastered. The twentieth century restoration, that was begun in 1906 and resumed for a second time in 1956, aimed at recovering the original Medieval structure of the church by reopening the monofore and the bifora on the façade.

 

A magnificent marble Trittico stands out in the bottom of the middle aisle, above the main altar.
The figures of the Triptych representing a Madonna with her Child in the center, San Pantaleone in the right niche and San Giovanni Battista in the left one. The side altars are surmounted by two magnificent frescoes: a Madonna with her Child and a Crucifixion, which date back respectively to the thirteenth and the seventeenth century.
The first, in Romanesque style, is one of the very few frescoes still existing from the end of the thirteenth century. The other, a true masterpiece, attributed by most scholars to Guido Reni.

 

Also important is the bell tower with Ghibelline battlements. It is 29 meters high, and it was built in the ninth century as a watch tower (the sea was closer in that era). In the twelfth century it was transformed into a bell tower.

 

Every year in the months of July and August the parish church is the location of the "Chamber music festival of Versilia".  Protagonists of the concert season are illustrious Italian and International musicians and young talents of chamber music, often winners of important International awards.

 

Parish church of San Pantaleone a Elici
Massarosa
loc. Pieve a Elici

tel. +39 0584 952033
www.diocesilucca.it

 


Opening times: in occasion of masses or events
Admission: free

 

 fonte: www.luccaterre.it

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