The Churches of the Mendicant Orders
On this tour you will discover the mendicants orders: Dominicans, Augustinians, Servants and Franciscans.
They settled in Siena in the 13th century on the edge of the city, so as to build very large churches to welcome numerous faithful. The churches are architecturally very interesting, typical Gothic and inside they preserve outstanding artworks. We will tell you the stories of the mendicant orders, their traditions, their lifestyle and many other curiosities.
The visit will begin at the Basilica of San Domenico, also famous because it contains the relic of the head of St. Catherine of Siena, patron saint of Italy and co-patron of Europe. In the chapel of the relic you will admire the sixteenth-century frescoes painted by the Piedmontese artist Giovanni Antonio Bazzi, known as Sodoma.
You will continue the tour along panoramic routes, passing by the Sanctuary of St. Catherine and at the end of the historic Via Banchi di Sopra you will continue the walk in one of the main streets of Siena, Via di Città.
When you arrive in front of the Church of Sant’Agostino, which unfortunately is not always open, you will admire another breathtaking panoramic view. Inside, there are important Renaissance works of Perugino, Luca Signorelli, Francesco di Giorgio Martini and the beautiful fresco of the Majesty of Ambrogio Lorenzetti.
The visit continues towards another hill where you will find the Basilica of Santa Maria dei Servi, a church with a long artistic history that combines many different styles in a unique and unrepeatable continuum. The church preserves important works such as Francesco Vanni’s “Annunciation” and Rutilio Manetti’s “Nativity”. You will have the chance another time to admire Siena in all its beauty from this charming panoramic viewpoint.
The last church you will visit is the Basilica of San Francesco, in pure Romanesque style but restructured over the centuries. Here you will admire the frescoes of the brothers Lorenzetti and discover the miracle related to the “Sacre Particole” (holy hosts) that are miraculously still preserved after almost 300 years.