The Bell Tower of the Church of Saint Biagio in Finalborgo
An Unusual Bell Tower for Borgo del Finale
The 15th-century, slightly leaning bell tower of the church of Saint Biagio in Finalborgo is an original specimen. Unique in Liguria, this bell tower was built over one of the towers within the walls of the medieval village.
The octagonal tower features a fine pattern of elegant open and blind double lancet windows and its tall spire characterizes the Finalborgo skyline.
MORE INFORMATION – The Bell Tower of the Church of Saint Biagio in Finalborgo
The bell tower of the church of Saint Biagio in Finalborgo was built on the site of a semi-circular tower in the town walls and reconstructed by Giovanni I Del Carretto after the Genoese destruction in 1452.
With its slender octagonal shape, the harmonious pattern created by the three orders of open and blind round-arched, double lancet windows, a crowning balustrade, tall spire, and Lombard band marking each storey, the building is a fair example of Renaissance architecture from Lombardy and central Italy.
In 1463, Marquis Giovanni I paid the Milanese master mason Bartolomeo Mutano for his work on the squared corner stones in Finale Stone used to build Saint Biagio’s bell tower with a piece of land by the nearby tower of Porta Carretta Town Gate in Finalborgo. A few years later (in 1466), Giovanni I bequeathed the sum of 60 ducats and a precious red silk robe with silver brocades to the church of Saint Biagio for the construction of the bell tower.
The tracery of the double lancet windows on the first floor was decorated with a number of earthenware “basins” (or bowls), dating back to between the end of the 15th and the beginning of the 16th century. The bowls, which are stuck to the side wall facing the church, include such decorative pieces as a large polychrome majolica plate from Montelupo bearing a pattern of “Persian palm trees”; a Hispano-Moorish plate bearing the image of the “tree of life” with a pseudo-epigraphic decoration on the brim and a bowl with a “pierced heart” in blue and white majolica produced in Tuscany.
Further local instances of “basins” used for decorative purposes in 15th century bell towers can be found in the churches of Saint Eusebio in Perti , Saint Bartolomeo in Gorra and Saint Giovanni Battista in Bardino Vecchia.
HOW TO REACH
TOWER BELL OF SAINT BIAGIO
How to reach the site
Finalborgo can be reached by car and parking is available outside the town walls by the old town centre. A regular bus service is available from the railway station in Finalmarina.
We regret to say that no tours of the bell tower are available.
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