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The religious Siena: a tour in the sacred monuments

The Crypt

Behind the magnificent Cathedral and before entering the narrow network of streets you will find the entrance of the crypt (by the way you can enter with your Opa Si Pass), an ancient place that goes deep underneath the Cathedral and host some gorgeous pictures telling the story of the passion of Christ, through the Synoptic and apocryphal Gospels.

The paintings, or better the frescoes, also tell some scenes of the young Christ. This place let you know how the original plan was when the Cathedral was built in XIIth century, before being enlarged and redesigned in the Middle Age, following the project of Nicola Pisano. The crypt, after being used for religious purposes, hosted some artisans, in particular iron working and fabric coloring. In the crypt, you can admire the Madonna del Latte of Ambrogio Lorenzetti. Since it’s not allowed to take photos, take your time to enjoy it.

The Museo of the Opera

Here you will admire the history of the town through its major artists, sculptors and painters. The museum is exactly in the building that had to be the new Cathedral and in the upper level you can visit the “facciatone2 (the big façade) from where you can enjoy a wonderful view of Siena from the top.

A must see of the museum is the Maestà di Duccio of Boninsegna, a big wooden “pala” once double sided and in the years separated into two different sides. Duccio is a modern painter and express the senese painting school together with Cimabue and Giotto.

The perspective and the golden background give you the idea of the magnificence of the Madonna with all the saints and noble people around.

Basic info

You can enter the two buildings with the Opa si Pass. Mind the opening hours that may change from winter to summer. And, if you want, ask for a guide, she will help you to understand better the history of the town.

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