First a village of the Frentano tribe, then a Roman municipality, the city achieved its greatest splendour during the Middle Ages, when its fairs became the most famous and popular in the Kingdom of Naples.
Santa Maria del Ponte (Foto D'Angelo)
In this town we can find many interesting churches such as the Cathedral, Santa Maria del Ponte. Built in the 9th century, on the arches of the Diocleziano bridge, on the exact spot where a miraculous statue of the Mother of Our Lord was found. The neoclassical line of the façade is flanked by the bell tower, facing Piazza Plebiscito.
San Legonziano (Foto C. Crisante)
Santa Maria Maggiore is one of the greatest examples of Burgundian Cistercian art in Abruzzo. The church has two façades and four richly decorated portals. The more interesting was made in 1317 by Francesco Petrini. Inside a sequence of tall, slim cross shaped pillars support the elegant ribs of the cross vault. In the sacristy, Nicola da Guardiagrele’s precious carved, enamelled crucifix (1422).
Il Miracolo Eucaristico (Foto C. Crisante)
San Francesco, has an austere rectangular façade, while the single nave interior has a sumptuous Baroque. The importance of the church is that preserves the first Eucharistic Miracle of the Catholic Church. During the VIII century, in this church then called San Legonziano, one brother voiced doubts as to whether the Body of Our Lord was really to be found in the consecrated Host and His Blood in the vine.
The brother celebrated mass and, having spoken the words of the Consecration, he saw the Host become Flesh and the Wine turn to Blood. The histological examination ascertained that the Blood and Flash of Lanciano’s miracle belong to a human being with AB blood group and that they have never been treated for preservation. The Flash belongs to a heart.