Monumental Cemetery



The Venerabile Confraternita di Misericordia di Santa Maria all’Antella (Venerable Brotherhood of Mercy of Santa Maria all’Antella) Monumental Cemetery is among the most famous and important in Italy both for its size and for the works of art collected there.

The cemetery has been expanded several times over the years, the first block consisting of the three chapels of San Giuseppe, San Sebastiano and San Tobias, now San Benedetto, was built between 1855 and 1856 at the request of the priest Don Giuseppe Scappini and thanks to the work of the municipal engineer Joachim Callai.

Many members of the Florentine nobility lie in rest in this place, such as the Antinori, the Albizzi, the Della Gherardesca and the Viviani Della Robbia, who have chosen it because of its elegant arcades and numerous chapels.

The cemetery has also been chosen by numerous artists such as Galileo Chini (1873-1956) the painter of important works here; and amongst the women who once aroused feelings in the hearts of famous men we remember Jane Clairmont Clara Mary, beloved by George Byron and Fanny Targioni-Tozzetti, beloved by the poet Giacomo Leopardi to whom he dedicated the Aspasia series.

There are any works of art: statues, medallions, bas-reliefs and busts carried out by renowned artists such as Renzo Vittorio Baldi, Ugo Ciapini, a student of Augusto Rivalta, the very Francesco Collina to whom a Pieta in colored chalk is owed, Maria Luisa Amalia Dupré and many others; without forgetting about the colorful stained glass windows by Manifattura Chini, the paintings of Pio Joris – a Roman painter, watercolorist and printmaker and Enzo Masieri, and various flower pots that come from the Borgo San Lorenzo Chini Furnace.

It is a real open-air museum!


Information and photos have been taken from the guide produced by the Ven. Confraternita di Misericordia di Santa Maria all’Antella, Cimitero Monumentale, Pagnini Editore, 2006  (Ven. Brotherhood of Mercy of Santa Maria all’Antella, Monumental Cemetery, Pagnini Publishers, 2006).

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