Milan: Frescoes at San Maurizio al Monastero Maggiore

I’ve joined my daughter on her doctoral research trip to Milan and Bergamo, Italy for a couple of weeks. It’s a tough job, but someone has to do it!

I just had one day in Milan before hopping on a train to Bergamo. It was a holiday weekend and Italy was on the move: Italians love to be tourists in their own country. So, I wasn’t able to get into the Duomo, Milan’s premier tourist attraction. But I enjoyed coffee with a fellow expat blogger, and just not being in gloomy Warsaw wandering around the city for a few hours.

Milan will never be my favorite Italian city. It’s just too grandiose. Much of it dates from the 19th century, Mussolini left his mark, then it was heavily bombed in WWII. So, while impressive, Milan lacks the considerable charm of other, older, Italian cities. But, there are hidden gems.

The Chiesa San Maurizio al Monastero Maggiore is one of the jewels. Behind a relatively plain facade, the interior of the building is covered with some of the most gorgeous frescoes I’ve ever seen, all dating from the 16th century.

The exterior is pretty average for an Italian church.
Inside the church, every surface is decorated.
Jesus and the moneylenders in the temple.
Salome and the head of John the Baptist (she is clearly saying “ew!”)
I did not record the caption, but the kneeling woman is probably one of the benefactors of the church.
Don’t know what this represents, but it’s pretty.
I LOVE this fresco of Noah’s Ark. Wish I had a better photo of it.
After the deluge. The Ark rests on dry land with drowned bodies below.
Adam and Eve in the garden. With topiary.
In the Hall of the Nuns behind the main chapel, spectacular frescoes on the ceiling.

We’ll probably make a day trip back to Milan from Bergamo later in the week. I’ll try once again to visit the Duomo, but I doubt it will impress me more than San Maurizio did.

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