Il Duomo Di Milano

Cultural Connections/ Monuments

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The Milan cathedral is the cathedral church of Milan and it was dedicated to St. Mary of the Nativity. The cathedral took almost 6 centuries to finish! It is the 6th largest church in the world and the largest in Italy. Archbishop Antonio da Saluzzo began the construction in 1386. Command of construction was given to Gian Galeazzo Visconti shortly after construction began. He hired a French chief engineer because he wanted it to have a French style unlike most other buildings in Italy. They continued to build it for many years but when Gian Galeazzo died and there were was little money and ideas, construction stopped until 1480. the tombs of Marco Carelli and Pope Martin V were added during this time.

Many years later Carlo Borromeo was the new person in charge. He decided to remove many monuments including the tombs of Giovanni, Barnabo and Filippo Maria Visconti, Francesco I and his wife Bianca. Then on May 20, 1805 Napoleon ordered Pellicani to finish the facade. Napoleon said that the funds to finish this would come out of the French Treasury. Pellicani added a statue of Napoleon at the top of one of the spires as a thanks to Napoleon. Napoleon was crowned king in this cathedral. In the next few years the finishing touches were added to the cathedral and it was finally finished in 1965.