Spoleto – Church and Monastery of St. Ponziano
The complex of St. Pontian, church and monastery dating back to the years around Mille, while the church was built in Romanesque style in the twelfth century. Tradition has it that here, in the second century, the young Pontian was martyred and buried. Later beatified, Pontian became the patron saint of Spoleto.
The façade is divided into two orders by cornices and ends with a tympanum. It presents a beautiful portal decorated with sculptures and mosaic, and a beautiful rosette inscribed in a square, with the symbols of the four evangelists. The bell tower that stands on the left side of the church.
The interior, restored at the end of the eighteenth century by the architect Valadier, still retains the original architectural structures and decorations of great interest. It has three naves with a presbytery and a crypt below. The nave and the chancel retain the eighteenth floor. The paintings of the side altars depicting St. Francis receiving the stigmata and the Immaculate with Saints, while the main altar depicts the Beheading of St. Pontian on Bloody Bridge (Roman bridge still visible in Spoleto, Victory Square). The choir occupies the space of the presbytery and keeps the skull of St. Pontian who, on the day of the anniversary (January 14) is carried in procession through the city.
From the bottom of the left aisle, you reach the Crypt, consisting of three naves with apse and frescoes of the fourteenth and fifteenth century, including a San Michele Arcangelo and the Madonna with Child. On the back wall is the sarcophagus containing the remains of St. Pontian.