The Battistero

battisteroThe Baptistry is a large circular structure, 55 meters high, lined with marble. The presence of two different styles – Pisan romanesque in the lower part and gothic in the upper one – does not spoil the harmony and the elegance of the building. Indeed the austerity of the blind arches on the ground floor enhances the beauty of the delicate decorations and of the mullioned windows of the upper part.
The dome, divided in twelve segments, is covered partly with tiles and partly with lead. Of the four portals the most remarkable is the one facing the Cathedral: above this portal, in a lunette, you can see a marble copy of the Madonna by Giovanni Pisano whose original can now be admired in the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo.

The luminous interior is divided by powerful columns into an inner part and an anular nave. The wide arches of the gallery allowed the women to follow the services that went on in the inner circle. In the left hand part of the latter you can see Nicola Pisano’s beautiful pulpit (middle of the XIII century) where the austere romanesque sculpure and the dynamical gothic decoration are superbely mixed. Its octagonal structure is supported by seven columns with elegant plinths: the five sculped panels show several episodes of Christ’s life.

Plan Battistero

1- The octagonal font with elaborate decorations, is dominated by a bronze statue of Saint John the Baptist by Italo Griselli (1926).
2-3 Marble altar of the XIV century: behind it one can still see a remnant of the XI century mosaic floor.