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“Grumpy Friars!”

Basilica di San Domenico
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Private Tour: Ecclesiastical Heritage of Bologna
Ranked #15 of 364 things to do in Bologna
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed June 15, 2013

The Domenico Friars were in a foul mood the day I visited! If you weren't with a group you couldn't visit the area behind the alter and they didn't take well to any questions! This massive, heavily restored Basilica dates back to the 13th century but looks freshly painted and polished. It appears pretty dull until you investigate the side alters which are decorative with beautiful paintings and ornamentation…at least the ones you can visit without being a part of a group! Midway down by the Friar in the booth you will have to deposit coins under his watchful eye to gain entrance to see the beautifully crafted tomb of St Domenico in fromt of the Cappella della Modonna. (Don’t ask the Friar questions!) The young Michelangelo sculpted the two winged lions at eye level, holding up the main alter and I believe some of the many statues on the alter along with Niccolo dell’Arca, a friar Guglielmo and Alfonso Lombardi. It’s really beautiful and worth trying to get in to see behind the alter the beautiful gold relic container. The second reason to visit is behind the main alter which apparently is closed to visitors not in a group, so even though I tried to enter with a group, I wasn’t allow in. No pictures are allowed; I took these before I was told not to; there is no signage indicating pictures are not allowed and lots of TA reviewers have added pictures...really grumpy Friars! I guess this church is on the tour guide route as it’s not a church you can wander freely and you will be constantly reminded about this during your visit!

1  Thank AnnArborMHT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"dominican order"
in 11 reviews
"young michelangelo"
in 8 reviews
"beautiful church"
in 15 reviews
"filippino lippi"
in 5 reviews
"great artists"
in 2 reviews
"major churches"
in 2 reviews
"side chapels"
in 7 reviews
"small donation"
in 2 reviews
"cover your shoulders"
in 2 reviews
"baroque style"
in 2 reviews
"main altar"
in 3 reviews
"italian churches"
in 2 reviews
"worth seeing"
in 2 reviews
"works of art"
in 3 reviews
"central bologna"
in 2 reviews
"well worth the visit"
in 3 reviews
"worth the trip"
in 2 reviews

157 - 161 of 686 reviews

Reviewed June 4, 2013

Bologna, like most Italian towns, is full of medieval and Baroque churchs and basilicas, but for me this stands out because it has the wonderful Filippo Lippi "Mystical Marriage of St Catherine". It you're not into medieval art, then this might not carry a lot of weight for you, but if you are, then it should put this basilica to the top of your list.

3  Thank Ian H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 1, 2013

Unlike San Petronio, the Basilica of San Domenico has excellent information panels about its history and the story of the Dominican Order, whose founder (San Domenico) lies in a beautiful tomb in a side chapel. The tomb is partly the work of Michelangelo, then just a young man of 19 years. Our visit to San Domenico was one of the real highlights of our stay in Bologna. Don't miss it.

1  Thank JMEdQ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 25, 2013

Very nice church... not so easy to find the sculptures made by young Michel Angelo... they are half way through on the right hand side of the church.

Thank aude b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed February 17, 2013

I went here to see sculptures by Michelangelo. The church felt special as there were not many tourists. There is so much history and architecture to explore in the church. If you can, have some guide book that helps you explore each portion of the church. That helps make your visit a better experience. You only need to pay a small donation to see some parts of the church. The staff person cleaning the church acted as a special guide for me to see the Michelangelo and other sculptures he was proud of. I am glad we stopped here.

2  Thank noreenz_77
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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