Ascoli Piceno

ASCOLI PICENO

The central historical part of the city is built in “travertino”, a grey-hued marble from the surrounding mountains. Its central Renaissance square, Piazza del Popolo ("Square of the People") is one of the most beautiful in Italy. According to traditional accounts, Ascoli Piceno was home to more than two hundred towers in the Middle Ages: today some fifty can still be seen. Per approfondimenti clicca sulle immagini.

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Main sights

The Church of San Francesco (1258 - 1549)
Commissioned by the Corporation of the Wool Merchants, was built in gothic style. In the side portal is the monument to Pope Julius II, while the central portal is one of the finest examples of local travertine decoration. Annexed to the church is the 16th century Loggia dei Mercanti, in Bramantesque style.

The Cathedral of Sant'Emidio
It houses an altarpiece by Carlo Crivelli. On the left stands the beautiful 12th century Baptistery built in an octagonal plan. The Palazzo dell’Arengo is located nearby.

The Palazzo dei Capitani del Popolo - "Palace of the People's Captains" (13th century)
Connecting three pre-existing buildings, it was the seat of the “Podestà”, the “People's Captain” and, later, of the Papal governors. In the 15th century the southern side was enlarged, and, in 1520, a Mannerist façade was added in the rear side. In 1535 it underwent a general renovation, and in 1549 a new portal, with a monument of Pope Paul III, was added.

 

Other points of interest

Solestà Bridge. Dating from the early years of the Roman empire, the bridge has a wide arch that crosses the river Tronto. Nearby, a port of 1230 and a fine medieval tower

St. Augustinus (14th century). Built with a single nave, was enlarged with two aisles in the late 15th century. The rectangular façade has a 1547 portal. The convent houses the Town's library, the Contemporary Art Gallery and an auditorium.

The Porta Gemina ("Twin Gate"), an ancient Roman gate from the 1st century BC, through which the Via Salaria entered the city. The ruins of the ancient theater are located nearby.

The Church of San Vittore (from 996). Built in Romanesque style with a pentagonal apse, the church has three naves with pillars and columns and a bell tower.

St. Peter Martyr (13th century). With a 1523 side portal by Nicola Filotesio, the church is locally known as “Cola d'Amatrice”. The interior has three polygonal apses and contains the precious reliquary of the Holy Thorn.

The Church of SS Vincenzo e Anastasio (11th -12th century). Built in Tomanesque style, its façade is divided into 64 squares in which is located a rich Gothic portal. The crypt dates up to the 6th century. The bell tower is adorned with mullioned windows.

The Malatesta Fortress. Probably built in a site once occupied by Roman baths, the fortress was rebuilt by Galeotto I Malatesta, lord of Rimini, during the war against Fermo. The construction, used as a jail until 1978, was enlarged by Antonio da Sangallo the Younger in 1543.

The convent of San Domenico. Now a school, has a Renaissance cloister with 17th century frescoes.
Fortezza Pia, a fortress commanding the city rebuilt in 1560 by Pope Pius IV (whence the name).