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Starting from the luxury B & B Secondo Pensiero an important stop is the magnificent Basilica of San Lorenzo. Historical testimony of fundamental importance for Milan, the basilica stands on ancient remains, and is a mixture of styles belonging to different eras. Inside there are valuable works of art, several small chapels, frescoes and statues that bring the visitor back in time.
The magnificent early Christian building was completed before the end of the fifth century and despite being repeatedly restored over the centuries, retains all its monumentality.
The dating of the basilica is still an unsolved problem, perhaps it is the mysterious extra-urban basilica Portiana mentioned by ancient sources and disappeared without a trace, then rededicated to San Lorenzo. Others have dated the church to the fifth century, considering the use, since the middle of that century, to bury there the bishops of Milan. Recent surveys suggest a date between the end of the 4th and the beginning of the 5th century AD. Thus the hypothesis of the foundation of the complex during the reign of Emperor Theodosius is reinforced.
The chapels of Sant'Aquilino, Sant'Ippolito and San Sisto, which make up the complex plan of San Lorenzo, were not all included in the initial project. The oldest nucleus included the central body of San Lorenzo and the sacellum of Sant'Ippolito, while the chapel of Sant'Aquilino was erected at a later date and that of San Sisto is a sixth century addition. The four corner towers reinforced the corners of the central body and were the only access route to the tunnels. The plan, with a central square body, is the oldest known evidence of a "tetraconca" church (with four curved walls). The huge dome was designed by the architect Martino Bassi. After its collapse of 1573, it was rebuilt by Bassi himself and completed by the architect Quadrio, during the period of Federico Borromeo. Outside, a marvelous marble colonnade is still well preserved, probably built around the 5th century.
After the visit you will soon take a rest at your luxury b&b.
Atmosphere and flavours to experience nature in the heart of Milan. Treat yourself to Officinali Montauto's bistrò and store, right here at Secondo Pensiero. Click here to see the menu.