Portal of the culture of the Municipality of Pesaro
Santuario della Madonna delle GrazieSanctuary of the Madonna delle Grazie
Sunday 18 February 2018

Sanctuary of the Madonna delle Grazie

Santuario della Madonna delle Grazie
Proprietà Arcidiocesi di Pesaro. Autorizzazione alla riproduzione concessa dall’Ufficio Beni Culturali

The history of  the Sanctuary is linked to the settlement of the Franciscan order in Pesaro in about 1231; their church was built in 1270, the convent in 1325. The order and church of St. Francis were favoured by the Malatesti family. During their dominion (1285-1445) they supported the mendicant orders of St. Francis, St. Dominic and St. Augustine.

Pandolfo II, who governed from 1355 to 1373, was responsible for radically restructuring the church, probably also including the portal, between ’56 and ’73. During the eighteenth century the building underwent a radical transformation, both inside and out. Rebuilding of the convent began in 1771 and was completed in 1805; the design was by the architect Giuseppe Tranquilli of Pesaro, a pupil of Vanvitelli.

The church became the Sanctuary of the Madonna delle Grazie in 1922, when the cult of Our Blessed Lady of Graces moved there in 1922; the cult had until then been kept in the church of the Servi in piazzale Matteotti, demolished in the same year.

All that now remains of the Malatesti structure is the beautiful white stone and red Verona marble gothic portal in the same style as the portals of sant’Agostino and san Domenico; the two lion cubs at the door of the entrance confirm Malatesti patronage. In the interior there are still two stone sarcophagi commissioned by Pandolfo II, one containing the body of his second wife, Paola Orsini, the other that of the Blessed Michelina Metelli (1300-‘56), of the Third Order of St. Francis.


text based on: Giovanna Patrignani, Pesaro. La Radio storia della Città, Pesaro, Metauro Edizioni, 2008, pp. 28-29



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