Basilica of San Zeno Maggiore

In this chapter we discuss the most important religious building in the city of Verona, the elegant and majestic Basilica of San Zeno Maggiore.

The Basilica of San Zeno Maggiore stands majestically between the 13th-century Tower of the Abbey and the isolated 12th-century bell tower. Since its construction it has always been one of the most beautiful celebration of Roman art and has never lost its beauty even with the many renovations that took place over time. The most important renovation was that of the twelfth century made specifically to host the tomb of the patron saint of the city, or San Zeno.

Externally the basilica appears calm in its ancient gold color, with an elegant façade in tuff and marble reliefs that depict biblical scenes. At the center, however, stands the rose window, also called Ruota della Fortuna as the figures along the edge indicate the alternation of human fortunes, while below it is impossible not to notice a graceful canopy portico resting on two slender columns.

The real masterpiece is the bronze portal, with its 48 square tiles, each of which expresses its meaning, starting from the Old Testament, up to the miracles of San Zeno, maintaining a very high quality of the bronze works. Simple and majestic, its interior with three naves is a harmonious coexistence of Romanesque and Gothic forms and hosts several masterpieces, including the Madonna and Saints of Mantegna. From the left aisle you go to the beautiful cloister, a Romanesque masterpiece.

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