Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta
The Cathedral of Pesaro, dedicated to the Assumption, welcomes visitors with a writing visible through a window on the floor:
'AUXILIANTE DEO ET INTERCEDENTE BEATA MARIA IOHANNIS VIR GLORIOSUS MAGISTRO MILITUM ET EX CONSUL PROVINCIAE MYSIAE NATUS HANC BASILICAM CUM OMNI DEVOTIONE ET DESIDERIUM A FUNDAMIS CONSTRU'
(with the help of God and the intercession of Blessed Mary, John - a glorious man, head of the militia, who was consul and was born in Misia - built this Basilica from the foundations).
The inscription dating back to the sixth century, probably after the war between the Byzantines and the Goths that led to the destruction of the Cathedral, tells us right from the entrance that the roots in the history of this building are truly profound.
It seems that an early paleochristian basilica was destroyed and rebuilt at the time of the Goths conquest of Pesaro.
Then, in the sixth century, the Basilica was rebuilt from the foundations by the Byzantines under the direction of Giovanni, probably a strategist following Belisario and Narsete, the Byzantine generals sent by the emperor Justinian to reconquer Italy.
The Saracens, who conquered Pesaro in 848, again destroyed the Cathedral, which was rebuilt in the 11th and 12th centuries.
Then there were interventions by the Malatesta and Sforza families and then a Baroque reconstruction that brought the building to its current appearance.
The precious memory of all these interventions is conserved in the four superimposed floors that bear witness to the radical transformations of the Basilica.
The deepest layer, more than two meters below the current floor, belongs to the early Christian Basilica.
Above it there is the Byzantine floor to which belongs the writing of the 'magister militum' Giovanni visible through a glazed opening at the entrance to the Basilica.
Other openings on the floor allow you to see the medieval mosaic carpet, contemporary - probably - to that of the monk Pantaleone in Otranto and that of S. Giovanni in Ravenna (with whom he has much history in common).
Peek out, just peek.
The opaque glass, the poor lighting conditions and the reduced size of the windows allow only a peek!
Such a heritage deserves much more visibility!
We managed somehow and very patiently to photograph the two-tone siren and some details.
But most of the photos we had to throw away for the poor quality...
In addition to the Mermaid are Lamie (horrendous beasts sucking blood to newborns ...). Around the Lamie there is the writing 'DNA MAROTA UXOR BONI OMINIS GAUDENCI FECIT OPERARE ISTA TABULA' (Mrs. Marota wife of the valiant Mr. Gaudenzio had to be this table made): a way to give himself to the memory of posterity.
We certainly subscribe to the long list of those who would like the medieval floor of the Cathedral of Pesaro much more visible and accessible: it is not up to us to indicate the ways, but certainly you can do better!