The church of San Domenico is located in the oldest district of Caltanissetta. Its foundation date is thought to be around the middle of 1400, when the Moncada, noble family of Aragonese origin, among the wealthiest families in Sicily, reigned over the city.
Originally the church was chosen by the Moncada as the site of their burial. Despite its central location in the old town, the church had a privileged role, but the cathedral remained the church of Santa Maria degli Angeli, located not far from the Castle. The widening in front of the church of San Domenico was, in fact, the central square.
The facade dates back to 18th century, when the church was restored in Baroque style. The bell tower too dates back to the period of the building renovations.
The Church used to host the Rosary confraternity, to which the nobles of Caltanissetta belonged. The painting on the main altar, made by Filippo Paladini in 1614, was dedicated to Our Lady of the Rosary.
The church has has a basilica with three naves, decorated with nineteenth-century stuccoes. There are also some paintings by Vincenzo Roggeri, a famous painter from Caltanissetta who lived in the 17th century.
In the middle of 1800s, with the suppression of the religious orders, the church and annexed convent were confiscated and transformed into a military district. Only in the early 1900s the church was consecrated again; the convent, after restoration, was used for civil use.
The church also has a crypt, currently open to visitors, where there are ome tombs and remains of those who were buried in the church. The Moncada are not buried in San Domenico, as they originally planned, but the remains of the beginning of the construction of their tombs are visible.
Copyright photos: Luca Miccichè
Article written by: L. Miccichè