The Church of the Santo Spirito is one of the most important religious monuments of Florence. While Santa Maria Novella is the church of the Dominicans and Santa Croce is the one of the Franciscans, the Santo Spirito has always been the reference for the Augustinians of Florence. Its construction begun in 1444 by Filippo Brunelleschi who was also responsible for the design of the dome while the bell tower is the work of Bacciod’Agnolo. After the death of Brunelleschi, in 1446, three disciples Antonio Manetti, Giovanni da Gaiole and Salvi d’Andrea, completed the work. The façade that can be admired today is the result of some changes made in 1700.
The façade and interior of the Santo Spirito Church
The façade that can be admired today is the result of some changes made in 1700. Santo Spirito Church as the same structure of another basilica created by Brunelleschi, the one of San Lorenzo, but it has longer aisles and the dome in the centre. Above the altar there is a baroque canopy built by Giovanni Caccini in collaboration with GherardoSilvani. The Santo Spirito Church has 38 side altars where there are some very important works . In the altar of the transept there is one of the most important works of the church: the Madonna and Child with St. John, St. Martin and St. Catherine martyr by Filippino Lippi.
Sacristy where Michelangelo lived
The Sacristy of the Santo Spirito Church is considered a jewel of the Renaissance period. Preceded by a vestibule built by Sansovino who was inspired by the Roman Pantheon, the construction of the sacristy was started by Giuliano da Sangallo and completed by Antonio del Pollaiolo. Sacristy houses a youth crucifix by Michelangelo. Michelangelo lived here in fact, supported by the Medici, after his father’s death. As a sign of recognition he gave to the church the crucifix he made when he was 17 years old.
The Cenacolo of Santo Spirito
In Piazza Santo Spirito there is the entrance to theCenacolo of Santo Spirito decorated with a magnificent fresco by Andrea Orcagna depicting the Crucifixion and the Last Supper of Christ. The Cenacolo hosts a collection of sculptures donated to the City of Florence from Salvatore Romano. Among the most important works: the Caryatid and Adoring Angel by TinoCamaino, the Madonna and Child by Jacopo dellaQuercia and two bas-reliefs by Donatello with San Prosdocimo and San Massimo, from the Basilica del Santo in Padua.
Information to visit to the Church of the Holy Spirit
Address: Old Town
How to get there: by feet
Opening hours: Daily 10 am – 12 pm / 4-6 pm Never: Wednesday afternoon, Saturday afternoon, Sunday.
Ticket: free entrance