THE DOME OF SAINT MATTHEW

Built in the traditional pink marble from Asiago, the Dome stands opposite of the City Hall, to establish the balance between civil and religious powers.

The Dome is dedicated to the Apostle Saint Matthew, the main saint of the city.
The foundation of the Dome dates back to the fourteenth century (1393), but it was destroyed and reconstructed many times over its history. The main building, designed by the architect Luigi De Boni, was built between 1842 and 1870 and consecrated by the Bishop of Padua, Giuseppe Callegari on 21st September,1888. It was then destroyed in 1916 during the First World War.

The church was reconstructed shortly after the war and was re-opened in 1922 and inaugurated in 1926.

The architecture of the church represents a neoclassical Corinthian colonnade, with three aisles and a central dome. The façade and staircase, designed by the architect Vincenzo Bonato, are made of the local red marble and decorated with pilaster capitals, a cornice and a pediment.
The main statute, representing Saint Matthew and a boy on his knees, is the work of the local artist Pallante Pesavento; the two other statues above the two side doors are Blessed Maria Giovanna Bonomo and Saint Anthony of Padua.

On the North side you can see the monumental bell tower with big windows, all made of stone. On the bell tower there are 6 bronze bells made in 1921; the main bell is called “Matìo”. The bell tower itself was destroyed during the Great War but later rebuilt again.
On the South side you can see the ancient sundial, which was relocated there in March 2003.

Behind the main altar there is a circular retrochoir, and there are two altars on the sides; in the one on the right, on 16th August 1650, the Bishop of Padua, Giorgio Cornaro, placed the body of the martyr Saint Modest. There are two other altars in the aisles. To the left from the aisles you can see the Baptistery, to the right stands the chapel dedicated to the Blessed Maria Giovanna Bonomo (inaugurated in 1970 on the occasion of the third centenary of her death with an altar which houses an urn dated 1785 with the tibia of the Blessed).

Inside of the Dome there are many works of art. Of great value are two paintings: “The Blessed Virgin between Saint Matthew and Saint John”, by Francesco da Ponte the Elder (placed above the altar), and “Abbot Saint Anthony between Saint Giustina, Saint Lucia and Saint Rocco on one hand, and Saint Vito and Saint Modesto on the other hand”, by Francesco da Ponte the Younger (placed above the entrance to the Chapel of the Sacred Heart).
It is also important to mention the “Via Crucis” by Palazzi and the organ with 3,600 pipes from the family Ruffatti of Padua.

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©Consorzio Turistico Asiago 7 Comuni 2013
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