Religious Tour

Cathedral of St. Justus
Sanctuary of St. Mary Major
Church of Sant’Antonio Nuovo
Israelite Temple Synagogue
Greek-Oriental Church of St. Nicolò
Serbian-Orthodox Church of St. Spiridione
Lutheran Evangelical Church
Basilica of St. Silvestro

Cathedral of St. Justus

The cathedral of Saint Justus rises on the hill by the same name, the heart of the roman city. Toward the middle of the 5th century, in the place where the ëcapitoliumí used to be, an early Christian basilica was built, the first Episcopal see, for which the preexisting structures were used. Probably starting from the 9th century in the place of the primitive cathedral two sacred buildings coexisted, that is a cathedral, smaller than the previous one, dedicated to Our Lady of the Assumption, and the chapel of St. Justus. In the 14th century the cathedral and the chapel were merged into one wide building;

The facade is simple, lighted by a delicate and elegant gothic rose window. The main door frames were made from the two halves of a funeral stele of the Barbia family, going back to the beginning of the 1st century AD;. The three bronze busts put on consoles represent the bishops from Trieste Andrea Silvio Piccolomini (1447-50), then pope Pius II; Rinaldo Scarlicchio (1622-30) and Andrea Rapicio (1567-73).

The massive and stubby steeple includes the remains of the roman propylaeum: five Corinthian columns bearing a trabeation with a frieze decorated with spirals and trophies. In it an ogival niche is placed, containing the 14th-century statue of Saint Justus, holding in his hands the palm of martyrdom and a model of the walled-up city of which he is the patron.

mosaicoThe interior, with five aisles, is very evocative for its asymmetry: the two aisles on the left used to belong to the roman basilica of Our Lady of the Assumption; those on the right to the medieval chapel of Saint Justus. The precious mosaics modeled on those in Byzantium and Ravenna covering the left apse go back to the beginning of the 12th century.

The mosaics on the right apse, stylistically similar to those of Our Lady of the Assumption, date back to about a century later: on the golden background a blessing Christ stands out, sided by the martyrs Justus and Servolo. Below the mosaics, inside the arches, around 1230 some frescos were made portraying the agony of St. Justus. On the lower level the theme of the curtain is noteworthy: through it some allegorical scenes can be admired as well as the beautiful dome supported by four arches structured on capitals; the tambour has a nice decoration showing blind arches.

Where: piazza della Cattedrale, 3
Contact: tel. 040 309 666
How: bus n. 24

Sanctuary of St. Mary Major

Santa Maria Maggiore

The Sanctuary of St. Mary Major was built (1627 ñ 1682) by the Jesuits, that had arrived in the city in the first years of the century. The work however was completed after a long time. The church has a Latin cross plan; the three-aisle hall has a barrel ceiling, while at the junction of the transept rises the dome. In the apse the great fresco of the Immaculate Conception shines out, made in 1842 by Sebastiano Santi.

On the main altar, built between 1672 and 1717, there are the statues of Jesuit Saints Ignatius of Loyola, Luigi Gonzaga, Francesco Borgia and Francesco Saverio, accompanied by Angels. On the right of the presbytery the chapel of Our Lady of Health opens, with the image of Mary perhaps painted by Sassoferrato. Left of the presbytery there is the chapel of the Crucifix. In the wings of the transept the 17th-century altars dedicated to Saints Ignatius and Francesco Saverio face each other. In the aisles three more altars are placed. In the panaches of the dome Giovanni Battista Bison painted the four Evangelists in the first years of the 19th century.

Where: piazza S. Silvestro
How: bus n. 9, 10, 11, 17, 18, 25, 28

Church of Sant’Antonio Nuovo

Chiesa di S. Antonio

The Church of Saint Anthony the Thaumaturg is commonly called St. Antonio Nuovo because it replaces an older church by the same name, going back to the second half of the 18th century. It was built between 1825 and 1849 on a project by architect Pietro Nobile.

Sant AntonioThe facade is characterized by an imposing pronaos with six ionic columns and a wide pediment; on the penthouse there are six statues carved in 1842 by Francesco Bosa, representing the patron Saints of Trieste: Justus, Sergio, Servolo, Mauro, Eufemia and Tecla. The rear faÁade is surmounted by a couple of twin bell-towers. The interior is striking for its wide space marked by the slow and calm rhythm of arches, barrel vaults and cross vaults, a rhythm that culminates in the central dome. The painting of the main altar, made by Nobile, is surmounted by an aedicule with small Corinthian columns and a dome.

Where: piazza S.Antonio Nuovo
Contact:  040638376
How: bus n. 5, 9, 10, 11, 17, 18, 24, 25, 30

Israelite Temple Synagogue


The new monumental Synagogue, made by architects Ruggero and Arduino Berlam, was opened in 1912 and replaced the four previous smaller Synagogues. The Temple, one of the biggest and most imposing in Europe, is characterized by Eastern traces in its mullioned windows, its columns, its engravings and the characteristic rose windows that form the Star of David. Different styles entwine into an original and evocative structure, featuring a bright and elegant interior, culminating in the four great marble pillars supporting the central dome. [more:]

Where: via S. Francesco d’Assisi, 19
How: bus n. 6 – 9- 22- 25- 26- 35

Greek-Oriental Church of St. Nicolò

San Nicolò

The temple, dedicated to Saint Nicolò and to the Most Holy Trinity, was built on the Shores. At that time Trieste was a prosperous emporium and every year thousands of ships from the East used to land there, where the Saint is extremely venerated. Saint Nicola, besides, is the patron of sailors, ship owners and in general of all those who work with sea trade. The church, built in the shape of a basilica with a single nave, was opened in 1787.

As soon as you go in, you immediately notice the wooden iconostasis shining with golden carvings and paintings with a golden background; over the knockers of the three doors the Saints Peter and Paul are portrayed, together with other Church Fathers. In the upper part there are 21 tempera paintings on wood with a golden background, depicting scenes from the Gospel. In the lower part there are 8 icons with silver sheeting. On the side walls there are two huge paintings by Cesare dell’Acqua.

Where: riva III Novembre, 7
How: bus n. 5, 8, 9, 10, 11, 17, 18, 25, 28, 30

Serbian-Orthodox Church of St. Spiridione

San Spiridione

The temple was opened to worship on September 2, 1868 and can host about 1600 people, 40-meter high, has a Greek cross plan covered by a great dome supported by four arches and is sided by four hemispherical caps that cover the four wings of the cross. Its structure reminds of the Byzantine style of Eastern churches. The interior is decorated with some precious frescos and paintings on oil background. High on the left wall, the first Ecumenical Council of Nicea of 325 is painted with St. Spiridione and the other Council fathers. The iconostasis, includes four icons of exceptional artistic value covered in gold and silver and were made in Russia in the early Nineteenth century. In the upper row there are the icons of the Saints of Serbia: St. Simon Mirotocivi, St. Sava, St. Stephan Prvovencani and the czar Urosh.
Where: via S. Spiridione
How: bus n. 5, 8, 9, 10, 11, 17, 18, 25, 28

Lutheran Evangelical Church

Chiesa Evangelica Luterana

Chiesa Evangelica LuteranaOpened to worship in 1874, this church, 35-meter long and 22-meter wide, was designed in neo-Gothic style by architect Zimmermann from Breslavia and was built be the company Berlam and Scalmanini. The sloping roofs in slate slabs are noteworthy, over the aisle and the octagonal apse. The pointed steeple, ornated by flowered spires, is 50-meter high. Inside, above the altar, we can admire the beautiful stained glass window picturing the ìTransfiguration of Christî by Raphael, made by art glassworks Zettler from Munich. [more:

Where: largo Panfili
How: bus n. 517

Basilica of St. Silvestro

Chiesa Evangelica Riformata Elvetica e Valdese

San Silvestro

San SilvestroThe Romanesque basilica of St. Silvestro is the oldest church of the city (11th or 12th century). On the faÁade stands out a sober and elegant rose window, while, in front of what was the main door, we can admire the Romanesque porch surmounted by the steeple that was decorated, with some elegant mullioned windows. A memorial plaque of 1672 reminds us that this was the ìprimum templum et Cathedraleî of the city. Above the main door a plaque in Latin narrates that in 1785 ( Joseph II), the Church was auctioned off at the cost of 1500 florins and was bought by some members of the Evangelical Community of Helvetian denomination, who, after a sober restoration, reopened it to the Protestant cult, dedicating it to Christ the Savior. In 1928 the basilica was listed among the national monuments. Since the end of the 19th century the Helvetian community was accompanied by a Waldesian community, Protestant as well.

Where: piazza S.Silvestro
How: bus n. 910 11171824252830