Cattedrale di Santa Maria Assunta
The new cathedral, or more correctly the summer cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, is the main church of Brescia, the mother church of the diocese of the same name. It is located in Piazza Paolo VI, formerly Piazza del Duomo. It was built between 1604 and 1825 on the area where stood the early Christian basilica of San Pietro de Dom (5th-6th century).
The history of the cathedral began in 1603, when Agostino Avanzo took over the ancient early Christian basilica of San Pietro de Dom, to obtain a complete view of the area available for the construction of a new religious building. The old basilica, now in a dangerous condition, had to be replaced by a new cathedral, more suited to the new architectural requirements dictated by the Counter-Reformation and more in line with the architecture of the time. Agostino Avanzo presents a first project of the Duomo, a hybrid between Mannerism and classicism: a Latin cross plan, with three naves and transept, protruding side altars and a large central dome. The latter, in particular, imposed itself from the very first ideas on the project and will accompany the building site over the centuries as a kind of great common aspiration, desired and, after all, dreamed by all the architects who will work there.
The Duomo Nuovo, not the result of a centuries-old building but the result of a single building site, presents a homogeneous and consistent overall structure in architecture and decoration. The only element that betrays the long life of the factory, which lasted 230 years, is the subtle combination that can be felt inside, but above all in the façade, between baroque taste and neoclassical style, the result of which is a sort of baroque classical style, practically a building started baroque and finished neoclassical.