Catacomb of S. Gennaro
The catacomb of S. Gennaro is composed of two layers that do not overlap. The original nucleus coagulated around the pre-existent “lower vestibule”, by expanding it between the late II and early III Century. After the III Century, new areas were developed, the “ambulacra” of the lower catacomb according to a pattern of extensive excavation and horizontal development.
The upper catacomb knew different stages of development: its origin is in the ancient tomb named "the upper vestibule”, known mainly for its frescoes of the vault of the late II Century. The main elements of the upper catacomb are the small "Crypt of the Bishops' and the majestic "basilica maior "(a true underground basilica). The former, located just above the tomb of St. Gennaro, is dedicated to the memory of the first 14 bishops of Naples, the latter is the result of extensive transformation of neighboring environments created when, in late V Century, was moved the tomb of St. Gennaro. The "basilica maior" has three naves, contains numerous frescoes (IV - VI Century) and is deeply cut into the stone.
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