The first Norman Cathedral in Palermo : Robert Guiscard's church of the Most Holy Mother of God

Title: The first Norman Cathedral in Palermo : Robert Guiscard's church of the Most Holy Mother of God
Variant title:
  • První normanská katedrála v Palermu : chrám nejsvětější Matky Boží Roberta Guiscarda
Author: Longo, Ruggero
Johns, Jeremy (Other)
Source document: Convivium. 2018, vol. 5, iss. 1, pp. 16-35
  • ISSN
    2336-3452 (print)
    2336-808X (online)
Type: Article
Summary language
License: Not specified license
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Palermo Cathedral is one of the Normans' most important architectural accomplishments in Southern Italy. Begun as a church, it was transformed into a mosque during the Muslim occupation (827–1061), and was then converted back to a Christian rite when the Normans conquered Palermo in 1072. Though transformed yet again in the neo-classical style in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, the church that stands today is unanimously considered to be that rebuilt by Archbishop Walter II Protofamiliarios and consecrated in 1185. A critical and detailed analysis of near-contemporary sources for the conquest of Palermo and the conversion of the mosque into a church under the patronage of the Norman duke, Robert Guiscard, sheds new light on this fascinating palimpsest of a building. Reinterpretation of the primary sources discovers a hidden and hitherto overlooked phase of construction, and clears the field of misunderstandings and doubts. A new edifice emerges – a material sign of Christian worship in recently conquered Muslim Palermo – that offers a fresh perspective on the cathedral at the time of the coronation of King Roger II in 1130.
Obsahuje Addendum: Norman Palermo, ca 1154: al-Idrīsī's description of the cathedral / Jeremy Johns (s. 33-34)