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Christian basilicas of Cimitile-Naples

Christian basilicas of Cimitile-Naples
Christian basilicas of Cimitile-Naples
 

The basilica complex of Cimitile, one of the most shining examples of early Christian art in Europe, stands on the remains of an important Roman necropolis, the Coemeterium Nolanum (2nd – 3rd century B.C.), and comprises seven buildings of worship enriched with precious mosaics, Decorations and frescoes. The transformation from pagan Necropolis to Christian Sanctuary took place after the building of the tomb of San Felice inside the necropolis. Felice was a priest of Oriental origin who, during the persecutions against Christians, administered the local church instead of the bishop who had temporarily fled to the mountains. It is said that, at the end of the clashes, Felice brought the old bishop back to town and at the death of these he refused to inherit the office, choosing instead to spend the rest of his days in a state of asceticism and poverty. Since the first basilica was erected around the saint's tomb, the Coemeterium was transformed into an important place of worship that began to attract more and more pilgrims.

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