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Florence Baptistery: Detail, view of the "Gates of Paradise" by Ghiberti

posted on 2017-07-03, 00:00 authored by G. Massiot & cie
Ghiberti and his workshop (including Michelozzo and Benozzo Gozzoli) worked on the East Doors for 27 years. These doors have ten panels depicting scenes from the Old Testament. This image is reversed.\u000a\u000aMost famous for its three sets of bronze doors, the Baptistery is the oldest extant building in Florence. Excavations have revealed various floor-levels below the Baptistery's inlaid marble base, and these fragments suggest that there was a building of some size on the site, possibly as early as the Roman period. The date of the present building is controversial, but it is now thought likely that it is a 6th- or 7th-century structure, although it has also been attributed to the 11th century: there was a consecration in 1059. The geometric facing was applied in this period, but the striped angle pilasters were added during the 13th century; the lantern dates from ca. 1150. An inscription on the mosaics of the apse indicates that it was begun ca. 1225 and, according to Giovanni Villani, the mosaics of the main vault were virtually completed by 1325.


Alt Title

Battistero di San Giovanni

Date Created


Date Modified


Spatial Coverage

Florence Cathedral (Florence, Tuscany, Italy): The octagonal Baptistery stands in both the Piazza del Duomo and the Piazza di San Giovanni|Florence|+43.773224+11.254602

Temporal Coverage

before or circa 1910

Cultural Context

['Romanesque', 'Early Christian']

Rights Statement

To view the physical lantern slide, please contact the Architecture Library.

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