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Barga (Lucca - Garfagnana)
Church of San Cristoforo

Barga is a center of Garfagnana, near Lucca. Disputed between Lucca and Pisa, in the fourteenth century Barga chose to give themselves to Florence.

Perched on a hill at the top performs his jewel: the cathedral of St. Christopher. The cathedral was built - at least in part - in the year 1000 and then underwent expansions that brought the current appearance.

Outside the cathedral stand out the medieval decoration at the base of the roof arches and two lintels of medieval origin: the one on the façade has two men with a tree of life and the other tells of the miracle of the "golden bowl" operated by San Nicola and it seems to be the work of Biduino or followers: a very similar architrave it can be admired in the church of San Salvatore at Lucca.

The miracle refers to the legend of the golden pitcher who wants a boy, Adeodatus, who was kidnapped by the Saracens, and intended to make the king's cupbearer Marmorino (the one intent on preening his beard). The youth, however, suffered from homesickness and St. Nicholas intervened to bring him home.   In two scenes on the right and on the left you see the young to work. In the central scene is shown while - dragged him by his hair from the saint - it is being returned to the parents.

Inside the cathedral stands a beautiful marble pulpit that seems to be attributed to Guido Bigarelli (XII century artist of the Ticino canton very active in Tuscany) with decorations related to the birth of Jesus.
The angel of St. Matthew is dominated by the eagle of St. John, who also works from the pulpit lectern. The winged lion of St. Mark and the ox of Saint Luke are represented leaning against angel and share its wings: the original solution, and certainly very compact ....

Beautiful marble slabs separating the altar from the nave: stand decorations in marquetry that belong to the imaginary of the medieval bestiary such as panther and the chimera. Among the decorations he could not miss, on the back of one of the marble slabs, a discreet and beautiful mermaid with two tails.