Italy Monza Cathedral Exterior

The Cathedral is located in the historic city of Monza, in place of the sixth century Oraculum Lombard dedicated by Queen Teodolinda to St. John the Baptist. According to legend, the Queen Teodolinda, who had vowed to erect a church in honor of God and of St. John the Baptist, heard a heavenly voice that predicted that the Holy Spirit, with the aspect of a dove, would indicate the location of the building. So, when Queen Theodolinda stopped on the banks of the Lambro river to rest under the shade of a huge tree a dove appeared and a voice said: 'modo', inviting her to stay. The queen replied 'etiam', so consenting to the construction of the new church in that place. The union of two words, Modoetia, in the origin of the ancient name of Monza. The cathedral was completely rebuilt from the year 1300, on the ruins of a previous Lombard church, with the creation of a Latin cross church and octagonal lantern. In the second half of the century the facade was decorated by Matteo Campione with white and green marbles according to the Pisan Gothic style. The elegant porch adorns the only access to the temple was added during Renaissance: the statue of St. John the Baptist is a copy of the original (XIV century), now preserved in the nearby Museum. Great historic significance for the lunette above the portal, as first iconographic representation of some pieces of the treasure still preserved in the Museum.