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SAINT ALEXANDER PARISH CHURCH

 

Saint Alexander Parish Church is set in Marconi Street 2.

The building is very old: it dates from 1237, when it was destroyed at the famous Cortenuova battle.

Afterwards a chapel was rebuilt according to the 15th century style, probably because of many pastoral visits which led to the consecration of the church.

In 1790 the church was enlarged towards east, and the new high altar was built.

In 1822 the works to build the new bell tower began. In 1840 a concert of five bells was bought and added to the bell tower.

In 1877 the engineer Melchiotti from Brescia was commissioned another extension project, which involved the demolition of the central nave walls to create two smaller naves.

In 1902 two concrete sculptures were added; you can see them on the facade, together with two stone vases.

In 1965 the facade was restored, and the internal walls wainscot wad redone, while between 1976 and 1977 the bell tower and the church interior were restored.

 

ARTISTIC PART

 

In the central facade there is a decoration of four Corinthian columns that rest on a stone base, and which hold up the trabeation, the frieze and the triangular gable, where you can admire the concrete sculptures of Saint Alexander. There is also a rectangular window which gives light to the nave; on top of the lateral entrances there are recesses containing the sculptures of Saint Joseph and Saint Peter. The building is divided in three naves.

There are load-bearing decorative pillars. In the presbytery there are plaster half pillars painted in false marble, with concrete bases painted as false stone. The plaster capital, in Corinthian style, supports the trabeation. Two semi-circular windows light up the nave.

In the wall towards the presbytery there are two altars: on the left there is the one dedicated to the Virgin Mary of the rosary, and on the right there is the one dedicated to Saint Joseph.

The church shows a rich fresco decoration and many pictural canvases.

In the central nave there is the representation of the Virgin Mary in glory by Carnelli, the Religion’s Triumph and the major prophets by Peter Roncalli.

In the right aisle there are several paintings:

  • A Saint Sebastian by Thomas Piombolo;

  • A fresco representing the Last Supper, painted in 1902 by Carnelli;

  • The Crucifixion with the Virgin Mary and Saint Carl by Lattanzio Quarena;

  • In the medallion above the right altar there is the fresco of the Sacred Heart of Jesus by an unknown author;

In the left aisle we can admire:

  • a canvas by Pombiolo, depicting St. Rocco;

  • a fresco by Carnelli from 1902, where the painter paints the "Expulsion of the Merchants from the Temple" ("Cacciata dei Mercanti dal Tempio);

  • a copy of the wedding of the Virgin of Raffaello, performed by Carnelli;

  • a locket representing the "Sacred Heart of Mary" (Sacro Cuore di Maria) by an unknown author above the altar in the left aisle.

In addition, on the walls of the presbytery there are oil paintings on canvas representing the “Via Crucis”. The main altar is made in neoclassical style in green marble and pink columns. The niches and statues were added later.

The sacristy, commissioned by San Carlo, shows a lot of wooden furnishings. The original bell tower was destroyed, and five bells were added to the new tower. It has a masonry dome, and the bells were cast to use the bronze for the war. The bells were then replaced with lighter ones.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

 

  • R.CAPRONI, Cortenuova, Pagazzano 1977, pp. 51-57, historical notes on the parish church of St. Alexander martyr;

  • CAPRONI, Cortenuova, pp. 58-59, paintings of the church;

  • CAPRONI, Cortenuova, p. 60, the sacristy of the church;

  • CAPRONI, Cortenuova, pp. 61-63, the bell tower and bells.