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The Mausoleum of Galla Placidia, Ravenna

The Mausoleum of Galla Placidia, Ravenna Italy : hotels close Galla Placidia .


Photo: 1)the Mausoleum of Galla Placidia,detail of the vault's mosaic (Courtesy of the archive of the Commune of Ravenna),2)the "Good Sheperd" mosaic,3/4)the Mausoleum of Galla Placidia and S.Vitale, 5)the S.Lorenzo mosaic,6) the Mausoleum and mosaic art of Mo Bravura

If the mausoleum was commissioned by the empress Galla Placidia, immersed in the problems relating to the Christian spirituality of those days, we could presume that such a decorative, complex and articulated plan may have been proposed by Saint Pier Crisologo, her personal friend, advisor and theologian.


In fact, the whole is an expression of orthodox creed, and the apocalyptic iconography of the Cross and of the Four Living Beings highlights the life on earth of Christ, but his second coming – therefore, the divine aspect – underestimated by the heresies, above all, Arianism.


Running parallel, the presence of imperial icons expresses the influence arriving from the court of Constantinople on Ravenna, the new capital of the western empire.


On entering the sepulchral chapel, standing in semidarkness, one can be enraptured by the splendour of forms and colours and by the richness of the mosaic decorations.


In the mausoleum of Placidia, the entire iconographic setting encloses an evident and unique meaning: through her faith in Christ, that leads to the gates of eternal life, and following the sacrifices endured by Placidia during her human experiences (expressed by stags and deer struggling to find their way out of the rich jungle impeding them in their search for water and safety), but also the exertion of the crown, recalling the touching  experiences of Saint Lawrence, the way to safety is opened to the empress, finding the utmost exaltation in the apocalyptic cross, symbol of Christ’s second coming, acclaimed by the apostles and witnessed by the four evangelists as far as the edge of the earth.


Prof. Gianni Morelli



The pleasure of fine accommodation in the centre of Ravenna: we recommend the Fabbri hotels for a pleasant stay as follows:

The Centrale Byron hotel, 3-star hotel in the centre of Ravenna, close to the Mausoleum of Galla Placidia;

The Bisanzio, 4-star hotel in the centre of Ravenna, close to the Mausoleum of Galla Placidia;

Once you have reached the hotel and parked your car, forget it and walk everywhere, because everything is within walking distance.

The railway station is near our hotels and within walking distance.

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