Based on the 1999 Calendar published by Massolini Group - Collebeato (BS) Italy by Mario and Claudia Massolini
copyright text by Michele Piccirillo; photos by Garo Nalbandian and Basilio Rodella

HOLY LAND OF THE CRUSADERS - 03
  Bust of St Peter the Apostle - from the Annunciation Basilica in Nazareth.
 Seal: Bishop of Nazaret.
 Annunciation - Nazareth
 Spring of Mary - Nazareth
 
 Portal of the basilica. The Call of Peter. North wall of basilica The risen Christ
 

THE HOLY LAND OF THE CRUSADERS


Armenian Codex - Annunciation & visit to Elisabeth.


The Holy Sepulchre - Façade

The Sanctuary of the Annunciation at Nazareth
Tancredi the Norman, to whom the principality of Galilee was entrusted, undertook to reconstruct with a grandiose basilica the Sanctuary of the Annunciation, which had always been venerated at the centre of the village in a grotto carved out of the mountain rock. Nazareth became an episcopal seat. On the same day as the disastrous battle of Qarn Hattin, which was the beginning of the end of the crusade adventure, 4 July 1187, Nazareth was retaken by the Muslims and many Christians were killed in the church in which they had taken refuge. Thereafter the sanctuary could be visited and be used as a church, thanks to the temporary peace treaties with the Muslims. On the 24 March of 1251 Saint Louis IX King of France assisted at the Holy Mass celebrated by his chaplain in the Grotto of the Annunciation. The Friars Minor who had already made pilgrimages to the sanctuary, took charge of the ruins of the basilica and the Grotto in 1620, thanks to the support of Emir Fakhr ed-Din, a leading Druse prince in the Lebanese mountains. The long presence and modern archaeological excavations have resulted in the remains being identified of the Tancredi basilica (75 m x 30 m), on which the modern basilica was added. Of significant artistic value are the sculptures that decorated the basilica, derived from the white stone of Nazareth, which are among the masterpieces of crusader art in the Holy Land. There remain some splendid capitals with stories of the Apostles, an acephalous bust of St. Peter, two heads of Prophets and symbols of the Zodiac from the portals.

LA TERRA SANTA DEI CROCIATI

Il santuario dell’Annunciazione a Nazaret
Tancredi il Normanno, al quale fu affidato il principato di Galilea si fece un dovere di ricostruire con una grandiosa basilica il santuario dell’Annunciazione da sempre venerato al centro del villaggio in una grotta scavata nella roccia della montagna. Contemporaneamente fu restaurata la fontana a nord del villaggio. Nazaret divenne sede episcopale. Il giorno stesso della battaglia disastrosa di Qarn Hattin, che fu l’inizio della fine dell’avventura crociata, 4 luglio 1187, Nazaret fu ripresa dai musulmani e molti cristiani che si erano rifugiati nella chiesa furono uccisi. In seguito il santuario potè anche essere visitato e officiato, grazie ai trattati di pace, prima che fosse definitivamente distrutto. Il 24 marzo del 1251 San Ludovico IX re di Francia potè assistere alla santa Messa celebrata dal suo cappellano nella Grotta dell’Annunciazione. I Frati Minori che già si recavano in pellegrinaggio al santuario, presero possesso delle rovine della basilica e della Grotta nel 1620, grazie all’appoggio dell’Emiro Fakhr ed-Din, un principe druso della montagna libanese. La lunga presenza e gli scavi archeologici moderni hanno permesso di riportare alla luce i resti della basilica di Tancredi (75 m x 30 m) sulla quale è stata innestata la basilica moderna. Di notevole valore artistico sono le sculture che decoravano la basilica ricavate nella pietra bianca di Nazaret, tra i capolavori dell’arte crociata in Terra Santa, come il busto di San Pietro, due teste di Apostoli, i simboli dello Zodiaco del portale, e alcuni capitelli con storie degli Apostoli.


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