Milan Cathedral (Duomo di Milano)

Milan Cathedral, as you might almost guess from this photograph, is one of the largest churches anywhere in the world. Built between 1386 and 1965 (yes, it took nearly six centuries to complete!), Milan Cathedral is a stunning example of Gothic design, constructed in marble given by the 1st Duke of Milan in the 14th century. However the amazing and spectacular west front, seen here in our photograph, offering such a difficult challenge in our competition, was not added until the 19th century.
Inside the cathedral the huge scale becomes more apparent. Fifty two columns support the high vaulted ceiling and roof above, which can be visited by lift for a fantastic view over the city and as far as the Alps.
Perhaps as befits the capital of a Catholic country, Milan Cathedral has been made the true centre of the city: its white front façade looks onto the Piazza del Duomo (Cathedral Square), and traffic circles it before breaking off down one of the radiating streets. This was the central location of Milan, chosen by the original founder of the cathedral, Bishop Antonio da Saluzzo; of course he never lived to see it anything like finished, as he died in 1402.
   
 
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