Basilica of Saint Anthony of Padua

The Basilica of Saint Anthony (Italian: Basilica di Sant'Antonio, regionally often only Basilica del Santo, or just Santo ) in Padua is one of the most famous and most visited sanctuaries in Italy. It is one of the world's eight international sanctuaries. She's Papal Basilica and Basilica minor. It is the first large church building with vaults in the Terraferma and was built between 1232 and about 1310 in Romanesque- Gothic style, to take the grave of Saint Anthony of Padua († 1231 in Arcella, now part of Padua ).


At Anthony's times stood on the site of the present church is a small chapel, dedicated to the Maria Mater Domini and by the will of Antonius its original burial place was. In addition to this chapel a monastery was first built in 1229, probably Anthony himself has established. The foundation stone of the first part of this church was laid in 1232 shortly after the death of Antony, to build him a proper burial church. Was built first a small Franciscan church nave with apse short; later the two aisles, numerous chapels, domes and towers were added. The original chapel was included on the site of the present Chapel of the Black Madonna in the left transept in the Basilica. After completion of chores around 1310, the church was completed. 1690-1737 at the head of the choir with a cupola Sweetheart Chapel (Italian: Cappella del Tesoro ) was added to the plans Filippo Parodi. In the 19th century the church was restored, with baroque fixtures were removed.

Facade and architecture

The basilica is 118 meters long and 32.5 meters wide, the short transept 55 meters wide. The largest internal height is 38.5 meters away.The church has a three-aisle nave, a polygonal choir, ambulatory and radiating chapels in the east. Nave and transept are wide in the typical architectural style of Italian mendicant. The ambulatory, the chapels (similar to San Francesco in Bologna) and the transept inserted intermediate yoke are of French origin.

The 37 m high and 28 m wide facade is the oldest part of the church building. It consists of red brick with a Romanesque-Lombard arched pediment frieze as financial statements. Five blind arches with pilasters of the lower facade with Gothic influence of pointed arches carrying the Romanesque dwarf gallery open rails about halfway up the facade. Their arcades resting on capitals late Romanesque and Byzantine style. It is decorated with a rose window between two double windows to the gable, crowned by a bell tower. So combines only the façade of Venetian- Byzantine, Lombard - Romanesque and Gothic elements. The bronze doors were made ​​in 1895 by Camillo Boito. There is a lunette depicting Anthony and Bernardine of Siena with the monogram of Christ above the main entrance. it is a copy after the 1452 painted by Andrea Mantegna work whose original is in the Museo di arte sacra Antoniano. The statue of Antony about it is also a copy of itself which is also located in the Museo di arte sacra Antoniano original Rinaldin of Puydarrieux from the 14th century.

Eight domes similar to the 5 - dome system of the St. Mark's Basilica in nearby Venice, two slender, hexagonal 68 m high bell towers and two minaret -like towers are typical features of the Byzantine style. The angel on the cone-shaped dome over the crossing perched 72 meters up. Two other rose windows on the sides of the high altar illuminate the interior of the church.


Inside the Basilica fall to Gothic and Romanesque styles. The chancel master the Masterpieces of Donatello. The group of sculptures is the most famous work of art of the Basilica. The current arrangement of the obtained 7 sculptures and reliefs 21 dates from 1895, and the present high altar was built.

On the left side there is a candelabra of bronze stands, a work from 1515 that due to its size and its artistic quality he is regarded as one of the most beautiful candelabras in the world. Dominant, however, the crucifix by Donatello (1444-1450) - a fundamental work of the Renaissance. The sculptures form from left to right: Louis of Toulouse, Justina of Padua, St. Francis of Assisi, Madonna with Child, St Anthony of Padua, Daniel ( patron saint of Padua ) and Prosdochimus.

At the bottom of the altar in the middle there is a relief of the pain man, surrounded left and right by putti. Four reliefs show the symbols of the Evangelists, right below the eagle of John. Next Miracle of St. Anthony of Padua is presented on four reliefs: The Miracle of the appended foot (front left), the heart of the miser (front left), wonders of his mother's innocence witnessing newborn miracle of the donkey, the place to eat before the host kneeling (both altar back ). On the back of the altar there is also a stone relief of the Entombment of Christ.

Typical are at the Basilica of the many tombs and chapels that have been erected in honor of some nobleman, scholar and church leaders, especially between the 15th and 17th centuries. The Sacrament chapel on the right was built in Gothic style in 1457 to accommodate the tombs of Gattamelata, a Condottiere of the 15th century, and his family. The bronze tabernacle is a work of Girolamo Campagnas. From the walls of his tomb and that of his son Giannantonio project ( 1456 right) shows. In 1651 the chapel was converted into a Blessed Sacrament Chapel. The current rich decoration goes back to the years 1927-36.

The lovely chapel of St. James in the right transept is one due to its architecture and its magnificent frescoes of the major works of the 14th century in Italy. It was after receiving the relics of Pope Felix called Felixkapele 1503. Between 1377 and 1379 she was as painted by Altichiero Zevio and the Bolognese painter Avanza. In addition to the Crucifixion, a major work Altichiero because Zevios, the story of Saint James the Apostle is said patron saint of Spain, with its shrine in Compostela. The elegant, gothic designs of the chapel are from the then largest architect and sculptor of Venice Andriolo de Santi.

Behind the high altar is the " Sweetheart Chapel " ( 1691). The "treasure" consists of a few relics of the saints, such as the tongue, which had been found unharmed at a first grave opening in 1263. The reliquary is a Florentine work of gilded silver ( 1434-36 ). In another reliquary dating from 1349 is the lower jaw, in a third the cartilage of the vocal cords.

In the left transept we find the access to the original church today Chapel of the Black Madonna ( Cappella della Madonna mora ) called. Here Anthony prayed with certainty, and here he was first buried. He rests in the adjacent grave chapel. It was begun in 1500 and completed at the end of the 16th century, but is still Gothic. Be found on the walls of nine marble reliefs from the 16th century with scenes from the life and miracles of St.. Anthony.


The church has four cloisters. The current, the cloister of the novitiate, is not normally available.

The other cloisters can be reached directly from the side entrance to the church. First, you meet the cloister magnolia, grandiflora ( from 1810 ) takes its name from the huge magnolia in the middle of the square. The architecture has remained unchanged since the year 1433. Again, as in the other courtyards, there are grave stones, damaged frescoes, sculptures, as well as a souvenir shop.

From this Gift Shop you reach the Cloister of the Generals ( 1435 ). It owes its name to the halls of the General Minister, who lives with his visits to this Bautrakt. From here you can reach the Cloister of the Blessed Luca Belludi. This is the largest and sunniest cloister. Built between 1496 and 1612, he also combined gothic elements with those of the Renaissance. A few years ago he was returned to the monks after he belonged to the state since the Napoleonic occupation and the State Archives, the Museum and the Library of Padua was home.

The forecourt of the basilica was once used as a cemetery; of which still bear witness to some tombs. Today, he is of the statue of Condottiere Erasmus as Narni - the already mentioned Gattamelata - dominated. This statue is a bronze sculpture of Donatello from the year in 1453. It is the first cast in Italy equestrian statue since the Roman era.

Statue of Gattamelata

Enclosure area

Enclosure area


The organ of the St. Anthony 's Basilica in 1929 by the organ builder Mascioni ( Azzio, Va. ) was built. The instrument has 59 stops on three manuals and pedal.

  • Couple Normal Couplers: II / I, III / I, III / II, I / P, II / P III / P
  • Suboktavkoppeln: II / I, III / I, III / II
  • Superoktavkoppeln: II / I, III / I, III / II
  • Melody Pairing: III / I, III / II


Worship altar

Relics Chapel


Anthony window