Hidden treasures

Halley's comet in the Scrovegni Chapel

Historical Curiosities
cometa-halley-scrovegni

Halley's comet in the Scrovegni Chapel

The Scrovegni Chapel in Padua is certainly one of the most incredible places of Western art! Inside it, you can admire the magnificent frescoes that the Florentine painter Giotto created at the beginning of the 14th century, depicting stories of the life of the Virgin and Christ and the Last Judgment on the counter-façade.

In the upper central tier - on the right hand-side wall looking towards the altar - we find the Adoration of the Magi. The Three Wise Men have come to the child, following the comet star seen at the top: the scene takes place under a scaffolding and the Magi wear red sandals, a symbol of royalty.

The first and eldest king is kneeling and has laid his crown on the ground and his gift is probably the golden reliquary held by the angel on the right. The second king, also in his later years, carries a horn full of incense. The youngest bears a cup whose lid he has lifted to show the myrrh ointment contained inside it.

Some details are related to the daily life of the 14th century, such as the 'modern' structure of the hut or the shape of the clothes, like the one worn by the angel with a sleeve narrow at the wrists and wide at the elbows.

For the comet star depicted at the top - which guided the Three Magi Kings - Giotto apparently drew inspiration from the Comet of Halley, which he saw during its passage in the sky in 1301-1302.

In selected dates the Scrovegni Chapel opens its doors even in the evening, to allow visitors to enjoy the magic of this extraordinary place even beyond the normal daytime opening hours. Check the availability for evening visits to the Scrovegni Chapel and choose to conveniently book online: places are limited!

By Insidecom Editorial Staff

Latest posts

Venice: The Intesa Sanpaolo collection at the Querini Stampalia Foundation

collezione-veneziana-querini
Unknown places & works

The Querini Stampalia Foundation is one of the most significant culture institutions of the city of Venice ... Recently it has been fur...

View

Veneto: Pinsa, a typical festive dessert in Veneto

Pinsa_veneta
Local Traditions

Pinza, or pinsa in Venetian dialect, is a typical dessert in Veneto, Friuli and some valleys of Trentino. The recipe varies from locati...

View

Venice: The Nativity scene at the Basilica of Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari

presepio_frari_venezia
Local Traditions

If you are in Venice during the Christmas season, we suggest you go and see the churches of Venice to see the nativity scenes erected b...

View

Padua: Halley's comet in the Scrovegni Chapel

cometa-halley-scrovegni
Historical Curiosities

The Scrovegni Chapel in Padua is certainly one of the most incredible places of Western art! Inside it, you can admire the magnificent ...

View

Top posts

Vicenza: The legend of the Dwarves of Villa Valmarana ai Nani

Villa_Valmarana_ai_Nani
Mysteries & Legends

Villa Valmarana ai Nani in Vicenza, Italy, is one of the best known and most visited villas in the Veneto region thanks to the frescoes...

View

Padua: The royal autographs of Catajo, a castle of wonders on the Euganean Hills

Castello_Catajo
Historical Curiosities

Catajo, a castle of wonders on the Euganean Hills a few kilometers from Padua, is a place full of stories to tell, mysteries, enigmas a...

View

Treviso: The Temple of Canova in Possagno

Tempio-Canova-Possagno
Big Names

Possagno is a small town in the province of Treviso famous throughout the world for being the birthplace of one of the greatest all-tim...

View

Venice: The Crypt of St. Mark's Basilica

san-marco-cripta
Unknown places & works

St. Mark's Basilica in Venice is probably one of the most famous and visited churches in the Western world. Every day, thousands of tou...

View